Executive Council

Rodney Poling, MD
President

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Dr. Poling is the newly elected President of the Tennessee Psychiatric Association. He will serve a two year term, ending in 2018. Dr. Poling has been practicing in Columbia, TN for the past 26 years. He is proud that his daughter, Dr. Lindsay Norton, has just joined him in practice after completing her training at Louisville. Dr. Poling focuses his practice now on Geriatrics, though continues to see a number of younger adults as outpatients. He is Medical Director of Behavioral Healthcare at Columbia, a 16 bed Geriatric Psychiatric Unit. He remains on staff at Maury Regional Medical Center and is a member of the Board of Trustees. He is board certified in Adult and Geriatric Psychiatry. Dr. Poling trained in the US Navy at Naval Medical Center San Diego, CA, and served as Chief of Inpatient Psychiatry in Orlando, FL, prior to moving to Columbia in 1990.

Dr. Poling has been a 32 year member of the APA, and was chosen as a Distinguished Fellow in 2015. He has served as Tennessee Psychiatric Association Secretary from 2012-2014, President Elect from 2014- 2016 and is happy to serve as President for the next two years. He has been involved in Lobbying efforts this past year with the help of Dr. Greg Kyser. His points of emphasis for the next year coincide with the APA positions on Scope of Practice issues and Parity of Coverage for Mental Health care.

Valerie Arnold, MD
President-Elect

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Dr. Arnold teaches on the faculty at the University of Tennessee at Memphis. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and the American Psychiatric Association. She is a member of the American Medical Association, the Memphis and Shelby County Medical Society, Tennessee Medical Association, and the American College of Psychiatry. In addition to serving with TPA, she is on the Public Health Committee and the Women in Medicine Taskforce with Tennessee Medical Association. She also is a board member of the Memphis Medical Foundation.

Dr. Arnold has been on the TPA board for several years and has held the position of past president of the Memphis Branch of the TPA. She is a representative to the APA District Branch, the Advocacy and Public Affairs Representative and was recently appointed to represent the APA on the ABPN Maintenance of Certification committee.

Dr. Arnold says involvement in TPA helps her know what is going on locally and nationally in Psychiatry.

Presently, Dr. Arnold resides in Memphis, where she has been Medical Director of the Adolescent Sexual Offender Program at Parkwood Behavioral Health Center since 2000. She is also Principal Investigator with Clinical Neuroscience Solutions, Inc. (CNS Healthcare of Memphis).

Tim Jennings, MD
Past-President

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Timothy R. Jennings, M.D. DFAPA is a master psychopharmacologist, lecturer, international speaker, author of multiple books, Past President of the Tennessee Psychiatric Association, President of the Southern Psychiatric Association, and has a private practice in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Dr. Jennings obtained his M.D. degree in 1990 from the University Of Tennessee College Of Medicine in Memphis, Tennessee. He completed psychiatric residency at D.D. Eisenhower Army Medical Center in Augusta, Georgia and has served as the Division Psychiatrist for the 24th and 3rd Infantry Divisions. He has also served as the USA Surgeon General’s delegate to the American Medical Association’s Resident section and as the Chief of Psychiatry at Winn Army Community Hospital at Fort Stewart, GA. Dr. Jennings is board certified in psychiatry by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, and is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.

Delores DiGaetano, MD
Treasurer

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Dolores DiGaetano, MD is serving as TPA treasurer for a second term. She is a past president of the TPA and a two term past president of the West Tennessee Psychiatric Association. Dr. DiGaetano is the president and owner of Chamberlin Clinic, a multidisciplinary psychiatric outpatient private practice in Cordova, Tennessee, which serves over 26,000 patients. She is a lector at Immaculate Conception Cathedral, chairman of the Fayette County Republican Party, president of Tri-County Republican Women. She has been on many speaker bureaus for pharmaceutical companies.

She enjoys time with her husband, children, grandchildren, extended family and friends in rural Fayette County. She is an avid cyclist and runs one 5k with family per year. As a psychiatrist, she promotes a balanced healthy life for each of her patients.

Dr. George Mathews, MD
Secretary

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Dr. George Mathews is a graduate of Grant Medical College, Bombay, India and completed his M.D. in Psychiatry from Bombay University. He worked as a Psychiatrist in India before going to England, where he was awarded the Membership of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, London, UK, from the University of Manchester. He came to USA in 1989 and completed a two-year Fellowship in Addiction Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, where he stayed on the faculty for a number of years. He has also served on the staff at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Parthenon Pavilion, and Skyline Madison Campus.

He serves currently as Psychiatrist and Medical Director, TrustPoint Hospital in Murfreesboro, TN, since January 2014. Dr. Mathews is a General Adult Psychiatrist with Fellowship training in Addiction Psychiatry. A Board Certified Psychiatrist, Dr. Mathews is a Fellow of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and was also certified by the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM). He has been particularly active in the Indo-American Psychiatric Association, having served as a Past President of the Tennessee Chapter.

Greg Kyser, MD
Advocacy

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Dr. Kyser has been board certified in psychiatry by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology since 1993. He is a graduate of the University of Arkansas and completed medical training at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. Additionally, he completed a master’s degree in clinical psychology from Trinity University. He has been in private practice in Nashville since completing psychiatric training at Vanderbilt University Medical School in 1991.

Areas of interest and specialization include:

Adult and adolescent outpatient psychiatry

Psychiatric hospitalization. Dr. Kyser is the Director of Adult Psychiatry at HCA Parthenon Pavilion.

Workers compensation, evaluation and treatment. Dr. Kyser is certified by the state of Tennessee Medical Impairment Registry.

Forensic psychiatry including fitness for duty evaluations, independent medical evaluations (IME) and medical malpractice.

Since 2003, Dr. Kyser has been a Distinguished Fellow in the American Psychiatric Association.

In addition to his clinical practice, Dr. Kyser serves as the legislative representative for the Tennessee Psychiatric Association and is the representative for the State of Tennessee to the Assembly of the American Psychiatric Association.

Marsi Thrash
APA Region V Field Director
State Government Affairs

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The American Psychiatric Association hired 4 new field-based positions in November 2015 to assist the state APA District Branches with legislative, advocacy and regulatory issues. This also includes Medicare, Medicaid, grassroots and media needs.

Marsi Thrash has been hired to cover Area V and is the Regional Field Director – State Government Affairs, South for Tennessee, as well as FL, GA, AL, LA, TX, OK, AR, KY, SC, NC, MS, WV and VA.

Marsi has over 15 years of government affairs experience in health care. Most recently she was the Georgia Government Relations Director at the American Heart Association. Prior to that she spent time in CME business development in oncology, Medicaid contracting, and campaign management. From 2000 – 2008 Marsi was the Government Affairs Director for TAP Pharmaceuticals (now absorbed into Takeda and Abbott) and lobbied FL, GA, AL, NC, SC, MS, and TN. While there she was also responsible for Medicaid and Medicare policy as well as patient and physician advocacy. She is very eager to get to know the Tennessee membership and assist with the mental health issues affecting the state.

Marsi lives in Atlanta (near Six Flags Over Georgia) with her 11-year-old son, a co-dependent Australian Shepherd rescue, and two somewhat grateful rescue felines.

Anne Carr
Lobbyist

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Anne Carr focuses on business, health care, and non-profit issues. Issues in which she has been deeply involved include non-profit tax exemption status, sales taxes, airports, state budget, TennCare, women’s health, primary care delivery, graduate medical education, trauma centers, mental health services, and long term care.

In 1986, Carr was a founding partner of Fosbinder & Carr, one of the first independent, contract government relations firms in Tennessee. She became a principal in Smith, Johnson, Anderson, & Carr, the predecessor firm to Smith Harris & Carr, in 1990. Prior to her contract lobbying experience, she also worked on behalf of state employees and nursing homes.

Carr has served in many volunteer capacities, including as a small business representative to the Regional Workforce Investment Board, President and board member at Nashville CARES (middle Tennessee AIDS and HIV education and support agency), a member of the Metro Nashville Storm Water Management Committee, and many roles as a parent in the Metro Nashville public school system.

A Knoxville native, Carr is a 1973 Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Tennessee and has a master’s degree in Public Administration from UT and Tennessee State University. She has a daughter, who is 26 and a graphic designer, and a son, who is 18 and obsessed with politics. She was a candidate for the 2009 Nashville Athena award, as the nominee of the Nashville Women’s Political Caucus.

Megan Frazier
Lobbyist

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Meagan Frazier, a Dickson County native, joined Smith Harris & Carr in 2003 and became a partner in 2008. She is a graduate of the Nashville School of Law and Middle Tennessee State University, where she earned a B.S. in Public Relations. She is a licensed attorney.

Frazier’s rise at Smith Harris & Carr to partner status was rapid thanks to her dedicated work on business, hospital and health care issues and her ability to steer clients successfully through complex issues, such as the 30 plus page Prescription Safety Act of 2012 proposed legislation. She is also well known for her ability to work with numerous policy-making boards and agencies in state government.

In pursuit of her goal of becoming a professional lobbyist, Frazier was employed by the Tennessee General Assembly as an intern in 2001. She moved on to the state Treasury Department and was later tapped by the Chief Clerk of the House to staff the Commerce, Health, and Finance Committee in both the House and the Senate. She also assisted the Clerk during House sessions in the Capitol.

Frazier is the President of the Board of Directors for the Tennessee Chapter of the ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) Association, as well as the Past President of the Tennessee CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) Association Board of Directors. She also serves on the board of the Tennessee Lobbyists Association and the legislative committee of the Tennessee Bar Association. She is also a member of the Nashville Bar Association, the Dickson County Chamber of Commerce, and the Nashville Kappa Delta Alumnae Chapter.

Frazier is married and has two young daughters. She and her husband are members of the Walnut Street Church of Christ in Dickson.

CONTACT

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Jackie Cavnar

Executive Director

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Tennessee Psychiatric Association
Jackie Cavnar
Executive Director

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STE A-224

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