When Forest Hills’ new City Assistant Jamie Dupré moved to Middle Tennessee, she had to hit the ground running.
“I started on the job in mid-November, and arrived less than a week before,” she said. “I’m still going through boxes.”
Jamie, originally from South Louisiana, moved to Kingston Springs from Durham, N.C., where she worked for Duke University for over 30 years. Her brother has lived here for more than 25 years, and her parents moved to Kingston Springs from Louisiana to be near him when they retired. Last fall, Jamie decided to join the family.
Jamie and devoted dog Ginger made the trip regularly from North Carolina to see her parents, occasionally flying but often piling into the car for a nine-plus-hour commute. Ginger, a rusty-colored terrier mix who turned eight in October, enjoys living in Kingston Springs.
“We have a big backyard, and she loves to chase deer,” Jamie said. “Now they come to the edge of the fence because they know she can’t get out.”
Jamie holds a bachelor of arts degree from Southeastern Louisiana University and master of arts from Louisiana Tech University. At Duke she worked in administrative support positions in university development, medical center academic affairs, the school of engineering, the president’s office, and most recently at the Nasher Museum of Art.
This gave her a broad-based administrative background, which put her at the top of the list when Forest Hills officials started the search for a new City assistant.
“A lot of the skills translated,” she said. “The position here also offers a lot of new things to try out, which I like.”
She says she likes the City and finds the people here are friendly. She hass met some residents who come by City Hall, and more frequently interacts with them when they call in with a question or to report an issue.
“Usually the resident is very appreciative and complimentary,” even when a problem needs to be addressed. “They’ll often say, ‘The City is doing a good job, but this needs attention.’ ”
Jamie’s hobbies include getting together with friends over dinner, watching Duke basketball, reading fiction and science fiction, watching “way too much” Netflix, and spending time outside with her dog.
You could say, things have come around full circle in Jennifer Hackett’s career—geographically, at least.
Her position as Project Manager for the City of Forest Hills brings her just down the street from one of her earliest jobs: a lifeguard at Wildwood, where she worked summers all through college.
Jennifer, a longtime resident of Nashville, attended Father Ryan, graduated from the University of Dayton, and earned a graduate degree from Vanderbilt Divinity School.
“Choosing Divinity School was about equity, in the church and in the world,” Jennifer said. “I use what I learned there every day. Divinity School helped me see where things are out of balance, and how to assist in bringing things back to balance.”
The skills she learned translate easily into work on City projects, she said. “Community building, listening to our citizen’s needs, creating solutions for things ‘out of sorts,’ I learned all of these things at Vanderbilt.”
Jennifer got involved with Forest Hills about five years ago, as coordinator of the City’s Recycling Clean Out events every spring and fall. Prior to that, she was the first full-time recycling manager for the Vanderbilt campus, working with plant operations and civic-minded students, building their program from infancy.
Her part-time position at City Hall includes managing City projects such as Neighborhood Watch and Restore Richland Creek as well as assisting with the City’s personnel transitions over the past several months.
Jennifer said she is pleased with the opportunity to interact with Forest Hills residents and officials. “I’m delighted to be working with the citizens of Forest Hills in this extended way after getting to know them through the recycling events.”
She lives in the West Meade/Hillwood area with her husband and two children. Besides volunteering at her children’s elementary school, Jennifer also does volunteer work for the Metro Schools Encore program, the Hillsboro Cluster, her church, and the Solid Waste Board of Davidson County.
In her spare time she likes to read, catch movies, and most of all, travel. Spring break holds a trip to see family in Tokyo.
Knowing that Radnor Lake State Natural Area provides countless hours of pleasure and recreation to Forest Hills residents, the Board of Commissioners has recognized “a collaborative effort and spirit of support” between Radnor Lake and the City through an official resolution.
Park manager Steve Ward, representing Radnor Lake, and Brock Hill, deputy commissioner of the Bureau of Parks and Conservation, representing the State of Tennessee, received Resolution 2017-1 at the Board of Commissioners meeting on January 19.
The proclamation affirmed, among other things, that the City of Forest Hills and Radnor Lake “mutually pledge and resolve to work together to enhance the lives of residents through promoting healthy lifestyles, environmental education, job creation, and economic growth.”
Hill said similar partnerships are forming across the state in communities that encompass state parks.
“Park Managers at each of our 56 State Parks are pledging to work with their local city and/or county leadership to highlight the contributions each makes to the overall quality of life at that locale,” Hill said.
Vice Mayor Lanson Hyde, Mayor John Lovell, Radnor manager Steve Ward, and deputy commissioner Brock Hill commemorate the resolution.
“Having the support of city and county officials and leadership is integral to the success of those efforts.”
The resolution cites factors including the role natural and cultural resources play in staying healthy, the responsibility of good stewardship, and the social and economic benefits of open green spaces such as Radnor Lake.
You, the residents of Forest Hills, are an important resource in keeping the City safe and the quality of life high. City officials rely on you to report situations that otherwise might go unnoticed.
One tool to report non-emergency problems to City Hall is SeeClickFix, an easy-to-use app for your smartphone, tablet, or computer. It’s a convenient way to snap a picture of the problem and zap the report to City officials.
Use SeeClickFix to report:
• Clogged culverts
• Damaged signs
• Deserted lot
• Dead animals
• Other situations that need attention.
You can also use SeeClickFix to ask questions about building permits, zoning, or City services.
City staff responds to requests during regular business hours. They will respond to holiday, weekend, or after-
hours reports during the next business day.
After you send a report, you will receive an email acknowledgment. You can check on the status of the issue online and will be notified by email when the work is complete or the issue has been resolved. MORE
SeeClickFix helped take care of this overgrown drainage ditch on Hemingway Drive.
The City of Forest Hills has expressed opposition to a bill pending in the Tennessee legislature that would prevent local governments from regulating the short-term rental of residences.
In a letter addressed to State Senator Steve Dickerson and House Speaker Beth Harwell, Mayor John Lovell expressed “our strong opposition” to Senate Bill 372 - Short Term Rental Amendment.
The bill’s provisions are insensitive to the vast differences in cities across the state, Lovell’s letter pointed out. “A law which may in some instances be appropriate for a large, commercialized city could be totally inappropriate for a small one with virtually no commercialization such as Forest Hills,” it said.
New FEMA maps have gone into effect. If a portion or all of your lot is in the flood plain, the City encourages you to be aware of the new base flood elevations. If you are in the Richland Creek area, your home might be newly added to the flood zone. You can check on this HERE or by calling the City of Forest Hills. MORE
As you drive through Forest Hills, be aware of potentially hazardous conditions caused by utility work. Take it slow and keep your eyes on the flaggers and workers.
On East Ashland, the Metro Water Services project to replace water lines is ongoing.
Joe Hodgson of Hodgson Douglas Landscape Architecture Planners presented the Master Plan for the Native American site to the Board of Commissioners of Metro Parks January 3.
The plan has as a visual focal point a large art feature of the palisade wall and a video/3D presentation that would enable the visitor to see the site as it might have looked at the time the Mississippian people lived there.
There will also be a pavilion for school groups and other visitors to learn about the Mississippian culture.
Another feature will be an agricultural display garden where specimens of crops grown in the Mississippian era will be on display.
Walking trails will lead the visitor to the points of interest in the park as well as connecting with proposed Brentwood Greenways in the future. The area closest to Old Hickory Boulevard will be reserved for parking.
The Master Plan was authorized and funded by the Friends of Kellytown.
Gary Barker, the TDOT archaeologist who first discovered the remains of the Mississippian village now known as Kellytown in 1999, named the site in honor of Mrs. Elizabeth Douglass Levine Kelly, who owned the property at the time.
While the board of directors of the Friends of Kellytown respects the great contributions of Gary Barker and Mrs. Kelly, it determined that the site needed to have a Native American name. The master plan calls for the park site to be used to educate the public about the importance of the lost history of the Mississippian people who lived on this site before the arrival of Europeans in America.
Forest Hills resident Mark McNeely with McNeely Pigott & Fox Public Relations conducted a survey to determine the public’s reaction to a Native American name. The results showed that a name change would be a positive move, with nine out of ten respondents agreeing that a name that better reflects the park’s Native American heritage is appropriate.
1. Event Lawn (Plaza Interpretation)
2. Informational Mississippian Culture Plaza
3. Vehicular Parking
4. Rain Garden
5. Native Vegetation
6a. Historic Palisade Line
6b. Interpretive Palisade Line
7. Bus Parking
8. Gateway / Signage
9. Connection to Proposed Greenway
10. Agricultural Display Gardens
11. Migratory Sculpture
13. Interpretive Plaza
14. Historic Kelly House
15. Existing House
16. Vegetative Screening
17. Educational Plaza
18. Historic Kelly Cemetery
Mike Moore, the Tennessee state archaeologist, contacted the Chickasaw Nation in search of a Muskogean language name for the site. Experts suggested aaittafama’ which translates to “a place for meeting together” in the Chickasaw/Muskogean language.
Metro Parks approved this name change at its February meeting. The new name is now officially Aaittafama’ Archaeological Park, and the Friends group is the Friends of Aaittafama’ Park.
Drusie and George Bishop enjoy relaxing with their horses Yankee and Autumn.
When Drusie and George Bishop set out on the search for a perfect new home in the fall of 2000, they had one big requirement: They had to have a barn and space for their two horses.
“Drusie has been a horse person all her life,” George said. “The main requirement for moving was finding a place where she could keep her horses.”
The Bishops were already familiar with Forest Hills, having lived on Timberwood Drive since the 1990s. They knew it met the location requirements of close proximity to work, schools, stores, and horse supplies, so it was natural that their home search started here.
“We found this in the Sunday paper. It was the first house we came to see,” George said. “We looked at others, but this one was a perfect fit.”
The farm just off Old Hickory Boulevard met all the requirements of space for the horses, easy access to conveniences, and peaceful surroundings just a few hundred yards from a major road.
“You have no idea when driving by on Old Hickory Boulevard that the farm is there, and from the house, you have no idea the road is so close,” Drusie said. “When you go to the top of the hill behind the house, you can see the WSM tower on Concord Road.”
The land had a horse barn, but originally about half the size it is today. Drusie worked to customize it, including a tack room/office/oasis where she goes to escape the world.
“The two-stall barn had been taken over by honeysuckle,” Drusie said. “It took me four contractors to find someone who could put a truck up the hill” to the spot where the barn sits.
George credits Drusie with doing all the yard work, and she agrees. “I’ve had my hands on every corner of the property,” she said.
The ranch-style home was built in the 1960s. Entertainer Pam Tillis owned it for a while and sold it to the Bishops when she needed more room to build a full sound studio in her home.
“She loved being up on this hill, as we do,” Drusie said. “You can feel the decompression the minute you start up the drive. ”
“The house is situated east-to-west, instead of north-to-south like most houses in the area,” George said. “We experience beautiful sunrises every morning.”
George, a law partner with Waller Lansden Dortch and Davis, grew up in Knoxville. He graduated from Sewanee, and for a time thought he wanted to be a priest. Ultimately he decided to be a lawyer and enrolled in UT Knoxville College of Law.
He moved to Nashville in 1976, two weeks after graduating from law school, and went to work for Waller.
“The firm has changed since then,” George said. “There were only 14 lawyers then, and now there are more than 225.”
Drusie grew up in the Hermitage Hotel, where her father was manager. She went to Sweet Briar College in Virginia, an historic liberal arts college for women in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. When the college faced the threat of shutting down and selling the 3,200-acre campus, Drusie joined the charge to save it. From all over, alumnae rallied. “We will not give the land up! We will not close!”
Drusie was thrilled when she got the news all the supporters had been waiting for: “We’ve got the keys!” The legal battle was over, and the doors would remain open.
George and Drusie met in the early 1990s, introduced by a common friend who was a work colleague of Drusie and the wife of one of George’s law partners. They dated for a couple of years and married in February 1994.
They have two children, Ben and Abby, both students at Washington University in St. Louis. Ben is set to graduate in May.
George has two daughters, Allison and Beth. Beth works in London at the Fulham Palace, an historic home of the Bishop of London. She and her husband Paul, a native of Edinburgh, Scotland, have a 16-month-old son, Thomas.
Allison works for The Leading Hotels of the World, which serves and promotes boutique hotels worldwide. She is based in New York.
Besides two horses, Drusie and George share the farm with their two Pekingese, Remington and Foxy, and two Corgis, Katie and Figaro.
For fun, they like going out for dinner and a movie, and recently enjoyed La La Land and Hidden Figures.
Posing at Beth and Paul’s wedding are Ben, Abby, Beth, Paul, and Allison.
One of the things that makes Forest Hills special is its natural beauty, including local wildlife. You can help document this aspect of the City by sharing your photos.
Add your entry to the Forest Hills wildlife scrapbook.
Charles McKay reports that this American gold finch says spring is here.
The only way for the City to get its fair share of Hall Tax revenues is for every affected resident to write in “City of Forest Hills, 1904” on state income tax forms.
Over the past six years money from Hall Tax has represented 51% of funding. Last year, at least 260 state income tax reports filed by City residents failed to include this crucial information.
Do your part. Don’t let Forest Hills’ fair share of the tax revert to Nashville. Write in “City of Forest Hills, 1904” on your state income tax report.
As warmer weather and longer days signal the start of spring, many people will take the roadways to walk and jog for fitness.
Review these tips and remember to use constant caution, to stay safe while running and walking.
● Always walk facing traffic. This lets you monitor approaching vehicles and control your moves accordingly.
● Stay as close to the shoulder as you can, and avoid stepping into the driving lane.
● Use caution when crossing the road. Look both way first, and don’t assume all vehicles will see you and yield, just because one did.
● Keep the volume low. If you enjoy listening to music while exercising, be sure to keep the volume low enough so you can use the sounds of your surroundings to react to unpredictable situations.
● Watch out for driveways. Cars coming out of a driveway may not be anticipating pedestrians, so take the initiative to look out for them.
● Be visible to drivers. In the daytime, wear bright colors. At night, take extra precautions: Wear light-colored clothing with reflective strips and carry or wear a flashlight. A reflective safety vest never hurts.
● Expect the unexpected. Proceed defensively, and be ready for the unforeseen. Be aware that drivers may be talking, texting, or dealing with other distractions. Be ready to react.
Next Door is a nationwide service that connects neighbors locally to discuss anything from wildlife to lost pets and from advice on vendors to things for sale. It’s a great tool for those kinds of topics, and if you’re part of our community, you can get connected via the link at the end of this article.
By contrast, Neighborhood Watch is a list of neighbor’s emails just in your immediate area of Forest Hills. It is neighbors connecting via email with the NW list who are just discussing safety and crime together. When a break-in or other safety concern occurs, the City asks neighbors to alert City Hall and each other via your area list.
Volunteer Watch captains are capturing emails just for their areas. The City does not retain private email lists of residents for purposes of privacy. If Forest Hills were to receive an Open Records request for private emails, the City would be required to make that information public. Even the City email list for which you may have signed up is kept by the company who processes email for us—just for that reason.
Each platform is unique, and each provide something useful to our citizens. MORE
Commissioner Henry Trost joins Weed Wrangle volunteers to remove invasive plants in March at Belle Forest Cave, a project supported by the City. Hills.