STARS Nashville
1704 Charlotte Avenue
Suite 200
Nashville TN 37203
Mission Statement

STARS exists to serve schools and communities by providing prevention, intervention, and treatment services addressing bullying, substance abuse, violence, and other social and emotional barriers to success.

CEO/Executive Director Mr. Rodger Dinwiddie
Board Chair Ms. Jillian Waters
Board Chair Company Affiliation C3 Consulting, LLC
History & Background
Year of Incorporation 1984
Former Names
Center for Youth Issues, INC.
Project 714
Students Staying Straight
Organization's type of tax exempt status 501-C3
Financial Summary
Projected Expenses $3,941,527.00
Projected Annual Revenue $3,770,008.00 (2016)

STARS exists to serve schools and communities by providing prevention, intervention, and treatment services addressing bullying, substance abuse, violence, and other social and emotional barriers to success.


Founded in 1984, STARS was originally known as Students Staying Straight and affiliated with the National Center for Youth Issues (NCYI), the founding national organization located in Chattanooga, Tennessee. In 1988 the name was changed to STARS, a program of Center for Youth Issues-Nashville, Inc.(CYIN) and has since expanded to multiple counties throughout the Middle Tennessee region. In April 2007 after recent mergers with Kids on the Block and another Student Assistance Program of the Alcohol and Drug Council of Middle Tennessee, CYIN was dropped and we became STARS Nashville. STARS developed its programmatic approaches on the basis of the best available research in the field of substance abuse prevention/intervention. Original services included; individual student counseling, small groups focusing on students impacted by substance abuse, their own or family members, students who had participated in inpatient treatment and those who desired to remain abstinent. Training for school personnel was a significant focus of the program. The services of STARS were defined as Student Assistance Program services to be consistent with the best practices in the field of chemical dependency for youth. Through several strategic planning processes, STARS revised the mission statement and governing goals/ objectives to address changes in the educational environment and youth culture. While STARS was a single focus student assistance program in its early years, the services are now referred to as “broad-brush.” Services now address student disruptive/violent behavior, school failure, repeated suspensions, bullying prevention, dating violence prevention and student leadership. STARS is also known as one of the leading providers of violence prevention/bullying/ harassment/ training for schools/ community organizations in the United States. In 1986 our goals were largely quantitative. These goals included projections of how many students/teachers would be served, the cost per school of providing services, and a budget, which would help guide the financial management of the organization. Today, the goals reflect both qualitative and quantitative outcomes and include a focus on collaborations to maximize program effectiveness in the community. In 9 counties, over 60 school and community sites, STARS serves over 100,000 students. In 2009, STARS, along with Oasis Center, opened the Youth Opportunity Center - home to 9 youth-focused agencies all working together to share space and integrate services and thus begin to close the opportunity gap that exists for youth in our community. In 2011, with the dissolution of the Alcohol & Drug Council of Middle Tennessee, STARS strategically adopted three of their existing programs: Youth Overcoming Drug Abuse (YODA), Deaf & Hard of Hearing Prevention, and Recovery Support Services. STARS is now a licensed drug and alcohol substance abuse treatment facility recognized by the State of Tennessee.



The Student Assistance Program of STARS is recognized by the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Association as an evidence-based practice. Our SAP is only one of three evidence-based intervention practices listed on the National Registry of Evidence-Based Practices and Programs (NREPP).  STARS services have produced consistent outcomes to include increased school attendance, improved grades, increased youth attachment to school and community, increased individual resilience and reduced suspensions, expulsions, bullying, violence, delinquency and alcohol and other drug use.    In 2011 STARS officially adopted three programs of the former Alcohol & Drug Council of Middle Tennessee: Youth Overcoming Drug Abuse (YODA), Deaf & Hard of Hearing Prevention Program, and Recovery Support Services.   2014: 1.  STARS launched, with the help of Lelan Statom, News Channel 5, Colin Wilson of the Predators, and Bee Attitudes, a BEE a Friend Campaign.  This campaign began as a wonderful idea of two Gra-Mar Middle School Students.  They believe that being a friend to someone, especially someone who has few friends, can be life changing.  STARS is creating a public service /membership program where adults and youth can commit to being a friend for a year, with the lope of a lifetime…”Changing the work one friend at a time.” This program will help combat bullying by promoting compassion and kindness. 2.  STARS and Belmont University  partnered to be the Mid-South presenters for PeaceJam.  PeaceJam is youth and Nobel Peace Laureates working together to change the world.  The mission of the PeaceJam Foundation is to create young leaders committed to positive change in themselves, their communities and the world through the inspiration of Nobel Peace Laureates who pass on the spirit, skills, and wisdom they embody.  Three to four hundred youth from all over the U.S.attended the event on Belmont’s campus, with at least 200 or more from our local SAP programs! 3. STARS presented Youth Engagement Summits throughout the entire state helping high school and middle school youth learn how to engage in their schools to positively impact school climate using each school’s Safe and Supportive Schools climate survey as a baseline. These proved to be very beneficial to students and adults as they strive to work as a team, maybe for the first time, to improve their school climate. 4.  Our Youth Overcoming Drug Abuse program (YODA) moved into a new space (onsite) and are now able to treat more clients in a more private and homey atmosphere.  Goals for 2015:  STARS would like to increase our social media presence and is working on a comprehensive brand and seeking a means to  allow each of the programs within the STARS "family" to be recognized for what they do and that they are a part of the STARS brand also. 2. Jr. Board is preparing for their inaugural fund raising event. 3. Working toward 3rd party billing for the YODA program 4.  Trainings for both youth and adults are expanding in geographic coverage and in offerings.  Restorative Justice is now a training with several of the STARS staff trained to train in that area.

1. We always need dedicated individuals who will tell others about us; tell both those who need our services and those who would like to donate to help provide these services.
2..  We need consistent gifts, of even small amounts such as $10-$20 monthly.
Other ways to donate, support, or volunteer
Due to the confidential nature of our services, we do not use volunteers for service related needs. However more than 300 active volunteers serve STARS through various roles. School faculty core team membership numbers approximate 250; STARS Board of Directors is comprised of approximately 37 members and the Jr. Board has approximately 14 members; approximately 10 volunteers help at the Annual Golf Tournament; and numerous college students and parents volunteer for events.  It is impossible to keep track of the hundreds of parents who volunteer in their children’s schools with numerous activities. Volunteers also help with our annual fundraising events including a golf tournament and a benefit concert with art auction.  Also, we can always use monetary donations, of even small amounts, which can be sent via designation to local United Ways or on Giving Matters, Network for Good, on our website, by direct check, or by credit card by phone. 
Service Categories
Primary Organization Category Human Services / Children's and Youth Services
Secondary Organization Category Mental Health & Crisis Intervention / Substance Abuse Dependency, Prevention & Treatment
Tertiary Organization Category Youth Development / Youth Development Programs
Areas of Service
Areas Served
TN - Cheatham
TN - Cumberland
TN - Davidson
TN - Dekalb
TN - Dickson
TN - Fentress
TN - Franklin
TN - Giles
TN - Hickman
TN - Houston
TN - Humphreys
TN - Jackson
TN - Lawrence
TN - Lewis
TN - Lincoln
TN - Macon
TN - Marshall
TN - Maury
TN - Montgomery
TN - Moore
TN - Overton
TN - Perry
TN - Pickett
TN - Putnam
TN - Robertson
TN - Rutherford
TN - Smith
TN - Stewart
TN - Sumner
TN - Trousdale
TN - Van Buren
TN - Warren
TN - Wayne
TN - White
TN - Williamson
TN - Wilson
TN - Bedford
TN - Cannon
TN - Clay
TN - Coffee

Our services and trainings are made available across Middle Tennessee, East Tennessee, West Tennessee, the Upper Cumberland Plateau and the rural and suburban communities surrounding these areas.  We are also doing trainings and workshops in a few other states.

Board Chair Statement
Comment from 2015 Board Chair forthcoming.
CEO Statement
Comment from CEO, Rodger Dinwiddie forthcoming.
Description STARS provides many levels of student prevention services, including universal prevention aimed at broad student populations, selective and indicated services targeted for at-risk students, & indicated for students already engaged in substance use and/or violence. STARS SAP was recognized by SAMHSA's Nationa Registry of Evidence based Programs and Practices (NREPP).  Service components of the program include health promotion for the general student body; attention to students who are at special risk for substance abuse, teen pregnancy, violence/bullying, academic failure, school suspension, or dropping out; and early problem identification, referral, and intervention for students exhibiting problem behaviors. 
Budget $1,807,810
Category Human Services, General/Other Children & Youth Services
Population Served Adolescents Only (13-19 years), ,
Short Term Success Based on Specialist-reported data across schools for the 2013-2014 schoolyear, STARS’ Specialists:

Conducted 774 classroom, assembly, and community prevention presentations -- 667 reaching a total of 164,001 students (this number includes duplicate counts as some students participated in multiple presentations);

Completed 3,341 intake assessments for students referred to STARS;

Conducted 14,408 individual counseling sessions with 2,054 students (61% of students enrolled in STARS across counties);

Served 1,287 students through small group counseling (39% of enrolled students);

Attended to 2,597 crisis episodes;

Facilitated 1,297 peer mediation sessions;

Facilitated service learning projects or community volunteer projects for 7,138 students (count may reflect duplicates as some students may have participated in more than one service event);

Facilitated 488 Core Team meetings, and 650 Student Leadership Team meetings

Program Success Monitored By

Data Collection and analysis method: Students who participate in STARS SAP small groups or individual sessions complete the STARS Post-Service form at the end of services. The STARS Post-Service form is designed using the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Youth Behavior Risk Survey (YRBS) 2013 High School Survey and National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), to assess change in students’ knowledge and attitudes associated with a particular topic. Students are counted toward achieving this performance target when they self-report increased knowledge directly related to feeling more positive about their future.

We know our methods are valid as SAMHSA looked at over 10 years of data for certifying our SAP program as evidence-based.
Description Kids on the Block's mission is to educate children & the community about health & social concerns.  Using puppets & other tools, KOB promotes understanding & acceptance of all children & adults regardless of differences. KOB addresses psycho-social problems, (prejudice ,bullying ,learning differences,child abuse social & personal problems,substance abuse.)  Programs include: Sticks & Stones-how words can hurt/promotes caring & respect; Awareness of Differences- promotes understanding of all persons; Dealing with Feelings-views divorce via the child's eyes/stresses sharing feelings; Child Abuse Prevention-helps students to identify child abuse/ neglect -promotes talking to trusted adults; Growing Up Healthy-healthy choices about food & exercise; Bullying Prevention-problem-solving ideas for bullying/ helps bystanders learn to advocate for peers; Substance Abuse Prevention-explores peer pressure & negative effects of substance abuse; Respecting & Accepting Diversity-takes on stereotypes/prejudices, teaches students to accept & defend others. 

Budget $234,443
Category Youth Development, General/Other Youth Development, General/Other
Population Served Children Only (5 - 14 years), ,
Short Term Success In 2013/2014, KOB was in 92 schools and community sites across 10 Middle TN counties. KOB did 423 presentations to students in grades K-6. Most presentations focused on issues such as name calling, child abuse, disability awareness, and bullying; as well as obesity, divorce and autism. KOB presented to 38,061 students & 1,852 adults. Evaluations were collected from 1,586 teachers, administrators, parents and guidance counselors present for the presentations. Based on teacher and counselor-reported data across all KOB presentations in the ten counties (Cannon, Davidson, Dickson, Macon, Maury, Robertson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson) for the 2013/2014 school year, KOB performers:

· Gave 423 total presentations reaching 38,061 students;

  • Received 1,586 presentation surveys back from teachers and counselors;
  • Received hundreds of letters from students who saw presentations;
  • Received six disclosures of abuse from students who saw presentations.
Long term Success We have many high school students and adults who tell us about seeing the program when they were in elementary school and what an impact it had on them at that time.  We survey some of our high school aged participants in other programs concerning what they remember about KOB.  They usually remember not only the puppets, but the life lessons too. 
Program Success Monitored By
Pre-and post-tests are given to the students and post-tests are also given to all attending adults.  Students are asked to write letters to the puppets, and their letters also reveal much of what they learned.  As mentioned earlier, surveys are randomly given to high school aged students involved in other programs to see what they retained.  
Examples of Program Success
 The kids letters tell us so much, "We learned we can prevent prejudice by learning about the person before judging them.  We also learned that you should not judge someone by their skin color or religion.  I learned many things that will help me in the future."  Letter from a 5th grad student.
  "Always awesome!  Thank y'all for consistently, year after year, presenting such important topics in such a fun, learning format.  Problem-solving techniques are definitely what students need to know."  Letter from a 1st grade teacher.   
Description Nationally recognized, STARS' Executive Director, Rodger Dinwiddie, trains entire school districts and systems in the areas of substance abuse, violence and bullying prevention and intervention, as well as Student Assistance Program implementation and Restorative Justice.  STARS has staff who have been professionally trained in the evidence-based Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, and Restorative Justice. Dinwiddie, a certified master level trained national expert in Olweus, provides support and consultation to schools across the country.
The goal of this program is to engage student athletes and leaders to address the common issues schools experience through bullying, harassment, racism, violence and other social pressures that contribute to negative school climate and school culture.
The Joe M. Rodger Youth Leadership, in concert with Belmont Univ., uses our MOVE 2 STAND bystander bullying training to empower student athletes & leaders to stand up against bullying.
Budget $517,286
Category Education, General/Other
Population Served , ,
Program Success Monitored By Every program has an evaluation component!

STARS has clinical services for youth 13-22 yrs through the Youth Overcoming Drug Abuse (YODA) program, providing case management, intensive outpatient groups and individual counseling for uninsured youth with substance abuse problems and their families. The participants of the YODA program include youth with:

  • substance abuse problems and:
  • no insurance or their insurance benefits for treatment are exhausted
  •  in DCS custody
  •  juvenile probation
  • court orders to complete IOP treatment or assessment Recovery Support Services which include services for parents in the Family Treatment Court under Magistrate Alan Calhoun.
 Besides case management and individual counseling, YODA offers the only known “in courtroom” support group for women seeking to gain child custody.

The Life Management Group meets once a week, offering support to those who've completed treatment or are in recovery, but still need support & education on issues relevant to those with past substance abuse issues. A primary focus is relapse prevention.

Budget $218,134
Category Mental Health, Substance Abuse Programs, General/other
Population Served , ,
Short Term Success
YODA's clientele :  100% were in danger of probation violation due to a positive drug screen; 99% had used one or more substances in the past 30 days; and 40% had a mental health diagnosis.  
After 2000 hours dedicated to each patient and over 300 assessments to link kids to care, in three months time 71% completed treatment services; 60% showed abstinence from substance abuse at the month interview, and 66% show evidence of positive change in two areas such as scholastic activities and participation in self help groups.  
Program Success Monitored By

Data Collection and analysis methods: Youth receiving services from the YODA are evaluated during intake, at 60 days and after 6 months with the Teen Addiction Severity Index (T-ASI). The T-ASI is a semi-structured interview developed to fill the need for reliable, valid, and standardized instrument for periodic evaluation of adolescent substance abuse. It uses a multidimensional approach of assessment as an age-appropriate modification of the Addiction Severity Index. It yields 70 ratings in seven domains: chemical (substance) use, school status, employment/support status, family relations, peer/social relationships, legal status, and psychiatric status. Youth are also evaluated upon intake and discharge using the Socrates 8D. SOCRATES is an experimental instrument to assess readiness for change in substance abusers. It yields 3 factorally-derived scale scores: Recognition, Ambivalence and Taking Steps. YODA collects data via the Teen Addiction Severity Index (T- ASI) upon intake and discharge as well as the YODA exit form to measure decrease in symptoms related to substance use and/or mental health disorders, including involvement with a peer support group or mentor, disengagement from the juvenile justice system, reported negative drug screens by probation officers, increased employment or scholastic activities, and improved school/job attendance, decreased suspensions, and increased community service activities. A client is counted as having reached this target when he/she completes a cycle of treatment services and demonstrates a reduction in unhealthy behaviors and/or drug use as recorded by the T-ASI and exit form.

Examples of Program Success
Upon exit of the YODA program, clients exhibited:
   Increased employment activities
   Activity in community service tasks
   Improved job and school attendance
   Increased scholastic activities
   Involvement in a support group
   Few or no new criminal charges or suspensions
   Tested negative on drug screens

Services for Students Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (DHH) are designed to prevent usage of  tobacco,alcohol and other drugs among deaf and hard of hearing individuals, grades K-12.

Students who are deaf or hard of hearing are naturally at higher risk for drug and alcohol abuse due to their increased difficulties with learning, communicating, isolation, depression, and family connection. 1/10 hearing people may become dependent on drugs and alcohol, whereas 1/7 individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing may become dependent.

Weekly classes are offered in MNPS  K-8 classrooms designed for students who are deaf or hard of hearing. Classes are taught using American Sign Language and in a visual format allowing students to easily understand the information. Other topics such as self-esteem, conflict resolution, anger management, and problem solving are taught

DHH offers in-home services working on1-on-1 with  families of children who are deaf or hard of hearing. Services focus on teaching American Sign Language and offering any  support needed, including  counseling, resources, or educational support.

Statistics show 80% of children who are deaf or hard of hearing have hearing parents, and 23% of those parents learn American Sign Language.

DHH offers services at 2 after-school programs: Bridges-Mary McKinney Youth Center (; Brentwood Baptist Deaf Church (www.

The after-school programs are for students K-12 who are deaf or hard of hearing and offer services such as educational tutoring, life skills, and constructive recreation
Budget $85,436
Population Served , ,
CEO Comments  STARS is referred to as a student assistance program, based on the effective practice of employee assistance programs for businesses. STARS is a member of the National Student Assistance Association (NSAA), an association of thousands of Student Assistance Programs across the United States who are concerned about the problems of student substance abuse, violence and academic under achievement. The Association has criteria and components which must exist in order for a SAP to be deemed effective in its implementation. There are 9 components. Several are highlighted:  Internal Referral Process and Case Management ; Ability to identify, refer students and serve students with academic and social concerns via a multidisciplinary problem solving and case management team; Student Support Groups; Ability to provide information, support and problem solving skills to students • Cooperation and Referral with Community Agencies and Program Evaluation STARS Nashville is rigorously evaluated by outside evaluater, Evaluation Design. Of special interest to the public is the following statement from the National Registry of Effective Programs, sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) panel reviewers included the following statement in their commentary about STARS Nashville: “The evaluation data indicate that the program is effective in reducing suspensions, improving attendance, improving grades, and preventing dropping out of school. The majority of school personnel agree that STARS is helping their students, that STARS is a positive influence in their school, and recommend STARS as a way for students to get help.”
Board Chair
Board Chair Ms. Jillian Waters
Company Affiliation C3 Consulting, LLC
Term Jan 2015 to Dec 2015
Board Members
Mr. J. Robin Barrick Smith Seckman ReidVoting
Ms. Edie Bass Community VolunteerVoting
Mr. James C Bradshaw Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs, LLPVoting
Ms. Daphne Butler Community VolunteerVoting
Mrs. Karla Calderon Kirkland'sVoting
Mrs. Jill Cogen Community VolunteerVoting
Mr. Mike Coupe Place of HopeVoting
Mrs. Beth Cox Sumner County Board of EducationVoting
Mr. Kevin Dyson M.Ed.EducationVoting
Mr. Bryan Edwards Hughes-Edwards BuildersVoting
Mr. Hilton B. (Buck) Forcum Cresa Nashville--The Tenant's AdvantageVoting
Mr. LeShane Greenhill Pishon ConsultingVoting
Ms. Patricia Hart Community VolunteerVoting
Mr. Orrin H. Ingram Ingram Industries, Inc.Voting
Mr. William (Tinker) Kelly VEBAVoting
Ms. Paige Kisber Hospital Alliance of TennesseeVoting
Mrs. Mary C. LaGrone Attorney at LawVoting
Mr. Darwin Mason Ed.DLEAD AcademyVoting
Mr. Derrick Mason Self-EmployedVoting
Mr. Brackney J. Reed Gresham, Smith & PartnersVoting
Dr. Arliss L. Roaden RetiredVoting
Mr. John R. Robinson Nashville Lawn EquipmentVoting
Ms. Sabrina Ruderer HCA HealthcareVoting
Mr. Bill Rutherford HCA Healthcare--Outpatient GroupVoting
Mr. Christopher Sabis U.S. Attorney's Office for Middle District of TN>Voting
Mr. Julius Siegrist Self-employedVoting
Ms. Sperry Bell Simmons ABF FreightersVoting
Ms. Christina T. Smith Merrill LynchVoting
Mr. Doug Smith UPSVoting
Mrs. Tricia Spehr Community VolunteerVoting
Dr. Sammy Swor Education--retiredVoting
Mrs. Lori Warrix Community VolunteerVoting
Ms. Jillian Waters C3 Consulting, LLCVoting
Mrs. Karen Weisser Hospira WorldwideVoting
Mr. Richard Winstead Crosslin & AssociatesVoting
Mr. Luther M. Wright Jr.Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.Voting
Mr. Ron York York and Friends Fine Art GalleryVoting
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 5
Asian American/Pacific Islander 1
Caucasian 31
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 22
Female 15
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 3
Board Meeting Attendance % 39%
Does the organization have written Board Selection Criteria? Yes
Does the organization have a written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage of Board Members making Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage of Board Members making In-Kind Contributions 100%
Does the Board include Client Representation? Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 6
Standing Committees
Development / Fund Raising
Risk Management Provisions
Accident & Injury Coverage
Automobile Insurance
Commercial General Liability
Computer Equipment & Software
Crime Coverage
Directors & Officers Policy
Disability Insurance
Employee Benefits Liability
Employment Practices Liability
General Property Coverage
Improper Sexual Conduct/Sexual Abuse
Life Insurance
Medical Health Insurance
Professional Liability
Umbrella or Excess Insurance
Workers Compensation & Employers' Liability
CEO Comments
STARS was established by a local regional committee in 1984, as a result of its affiliation with the national program, the Center for Youth Issues, Inc. located in Chattanooga, Tennessee. While the Regional Committee was structured as a board, its establishment as a committee was due in part to the affiliation with other sites around the United States. Shortly afterward the committee became the local Board of Directors of the Program in the Middle Tennessee area. Currently, the STARS Board is a policy board. The Board is a group of individuals representative of the communities STARS serves. Primary responsibilities for the day to day operation are delegated to the CEO and the Chief Operations Officer, Chief Finance Office, Chief Development Officer, VP of  Youth Development, Program Director and Staff. The STARS Board utilizes an active committee structure with the primary oversight delegated to the Executive Committee, which meets monthly or more often as necessary, and consists of the Chair, Vice Chair, Past Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Development & Marketing and Social Enterprise. Additional committees are Nominating, Finance and  Program. Within each committee there are specific tasks and responsibilities that are related to the goals of the organization's strategic plan.
Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Mr. Rodger Dinwiddie
Term Start Oct 1986
Experience  Rodger Dinwiddie is the Chief Executive Officer of Students Taking A Right Stand (STARS-Nashville), in Nashville Tennessee. He has served as the Executive Director since 1986. 

Prior to joining STARS, Rodger served as the Executive Director of a non-profit organization working with juvenile court referrals. He also was a classroom teacher in the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools for 7 years. During his tenure at STARS he has provided numerous school and community based prevention and intervention trainings and consultation services to schools and school systems throughout the United States. He is the co-author of the training seminar Anger, Violence, and You and has been providing Respect & Protect and No-Bullying training for Hazelden since 1995. He is a certified lead trainer for the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, and serves as the Tennessee State Olweus Coordinator.

As Past President of the National Student Assistance Association, Rodger continues to serve on the Board of Directors and is currently a member of numerous local and state organizations dedicated to prevention and intervention. Rodger is active in the Middle Tennessee area as a Rotarian, has served as a member of the Nashville Chamber of Commerce’s Citizens Panel For a Community Report Card on Education (Metro Public Schools) and has been one of the three honorees as not for profit CEO of the Year in Nashville, Tennessee, an award given by The Frist Foundation and the Center for Not for Profit Management. During his tenure STARS has been the recipient of many awards, including the Making A Difference given by the Frist Foundation, and most recently as a recipient of the Frist Center’s Innovation in Action Award for his role in the development of the Youth Opportunity Center, a collaborative venture between Oasis Center and STARS Nashville, housing 12 not for profit organizations dedicated to youth services in Nashville. Rodger has also served as one of the founders and developers of the Tennessee Yes2Kids Conference for youth caregivers and has been its co chair since 2000.

Rodger received his Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from George Peabody College and his M.Ed. in Educational Administration and Supervision from Middle Tennessee State University. 

Former CEOs
Mr. Charlie Newman Jan 1985 - Jan 1986
Full Time Staff 52
Part Time Staff 10
Volunteers 300
Contractors 1
Retention Rate 0%
Plans & Policies
Does the organization have a documented Fundraising Plan? Yes
Does the organization have an approved Strategic Plan? Yes
Number of years Strategic Plan Considers 3
When was Strategic Plan adopted? Sept 2011
In case of a change in leadership, is a Management Succession plan in place? No
Does the organization have a Policies and Procedures Plan? Yes
Does the organization have a Nondiscrimination Policy? Yes
AFP (Association of Fundraising Professionals)2001
Center for Nonprofit Management Excellence Network2000
Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce2004
Nashville Prevention Partnership2001
National Student Assistance Association1988
Metro Nashville Public Schools/Chamber of Commerce Alignment Process2002
Alignment Nashville2003
Nashville Youth Alliance2002
Society for Human Resource Management2005
Center for Nonprofit Management Excellence Network1996
Nashville Rotary Club2001
External Assessments and Accreditations
External Assessments and Accreditations
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Association/National Registry of Evidenced Based Programs and Practice2012
Finalist, Not for Profit CEO of the Year AwardBank of America2003
Making a Difference AwardCenter for Not For Profit Management2001
Board Member Patricia and Rodes Hart - Outstanding Philanthropist of the YearNashville Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Executives2001
2001 Fundraising Award for Newsletter of the YearAssociation of Fundraising Professionals2001
NPP Drug Free Community Award - Best Practices AwardNashville Prevention Partnership2001
Frist Foundation's INNOVATION IN ACTION AWARDCenter For Nonprofit Managements2009
Baptist Healing Trust Compassionate Care AwardSalute To Excellence2011
Top Work PlacesThe Tennessean2013
Top Work PlacesThe Tennessean2014
Top Work Places--Meaningfulness AwardThe Tennessean2014
Senior Staff
Title Director of Business Operations
Experience/Biography Cynthia Whetstone, Director of Business Operations has been with STARS since 1998. Prior to STARS she served as a Senior Financial Analyst to Dana Corporation for 7 years, and previous to that served 4 years in public accounting. She is a CPA and a member of the American Institute of Public Accountants. BS Accounting/ Business Administration from Trevecca University.
Title Associate Exec. Director for Prevention
Title Director of Human Resources

 Teresa has been the HR Director for STARS Nashville since 2005. She has served in human resources leadership since 1983 and is a certified professional in human resource management (PHR) through the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).   She received her Bachelor's degree in Human Relations and her Master's degree in Business from Trevecca University.

Title Director of Development
Title Program Director of Kids On The Block
Title Program Director
Title Clinical Director
Title Program Director-Services for Students who are Deaf or HOH
CEO Comments Coming soon
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year Start July 01 2015
Fiscal Year End June 30 2016
Projected Revenue $3,770,008.00
Projected Expenses $3,941,527.00
Endowment Spending Policy N/A
Endowment Spending Percentage (if selected) 0%
Detailed Financials
Revenue and ExpensesHelpFinancial data for prior years is entered by foundation staff based on the documents submitted by nonprofit organizations.Foundation staff members enter this information to assure consistency in the presentation of financial data across all organizations.
Fiscal Year201420132012
Total Revenue$3,229,628$2,958,287$3,249,557
Total Expenses$3,223,666$2,985,649$3,071,030
Revenue Less Expenses$5,962($27,362)$178,527
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available) and revenue sources may not sum to total based on reconciliation differences. Revenue from foundations and corporations may include individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201420132012
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
Government Contributions$608,473$606,546$636,082
Individual Contributions$560,738$150,644$409,459
Investment Income, Net of Losses$127,296$36,328$46,994
Membership Dues$0$0$0
Special Events$139,160$154,801$135,198
Revenue In-Kind$5,000$6,735$1,887
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201420132012
Program Expense$2,624,814$2,437,369$2,521,035
Administration Expense$368,079$320,955$336,012
Fundraising Expense$230,773$227,325$213,983
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.000.991.06
Program Expense/Total Expenses81%82%82%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue12%11%9%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201420132012
Total Assets$4,336,158$5,531,656$5,574,169
Current Assets$1,084,920$2,113,268$1,980,158
Long-Term Liabilities$7,085$7,085$20,643
Current Liabilities$233,031$233,031$253,972
Total Net Assets$4,096,042$5,291,540$5,272,554
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201420132012
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities4.669.077.80
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201420132012
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201420132012
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountProgram Service Revenue $1,096,295Program Service Revenue $825,481Program Service Revenue $757,722
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountIndirect Public Support $690,197Federated Campaigns (United Way) $704,636Government Grants $636,082
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountGovernment Grants $608,473Government Grants $606,546United Way Contributions $616,201
IRS Letter of Exemption
Capital Campaign
Is the organization currently conducting a Capital Campaign for an endowment or the purchase of a major asset? No
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No
State Charitable Solicitations Permit
TN Charitable Solicitations Registration Yes - Expires Dec 2015
Solicitations Permit
Charitable Solicitations 2015
Organization Comments

Public Funding:We have cultivated additional relationships with different departments within Metro Schools for services. While funding opportunities are limited within the public sector for services geared toward social, emotional competencies, there will be several chances to secure some dollars for the next academic year. In addition, the State of Tennessee, through the new School Climate Center, will have a partnership with MNPS and it is our hope that this will provide opportunity for new funding streams.

Because of the limited grant opportunities, the Board and Staff are vigorously pursuing all possible opportunities for funding. We have increased revenues generated by our three main fund raising events. We have begun the process of establishing an alumni association which we believe will provide new revenues. We have several proposals being submitted in the next few months to serve multiple sites in MNPS with violence and bullying prevention services.

Sumner County Schools faces formidable challenges next year in public funding. Several grants are rolling off. At this point the Federal Department of Education has not released new funding streams for which they or we (STARS) may apply. We will explore additional federal funding streams through the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration. In addition, the State of Tennessee, through the new School Climate Center, will also partner with Sumner County and it is our hope that this will provide opportunity for new funding streams. Presentations have already been established with the City of Hendersonville, one of the key funders and supporters of STARS SAP services in the community. We have also begun the process of establishing an alumni association which we believe will provide new revenues

Kids on the Block:We have steadily increased the fees for service for KOB presentations and have seen this produce a new revenue stream to supplement the cost of the programs in schools. These funds have been generated at the school building level.  To increase the possibility of additional funding, we have spent the last year improving and increasing data collection processes as well as shifting the measure toward more focused outcomes.  And, we are also in the infancy stages of developing a KOB training program for high school students, as a part of our youth development strategies for the agency. These initiatives will increase the possibilities of new revenues streams for KOB.

YODA:In its second year, we have secured commitments from the Department of Mental Health services for sustaining funds. We began the process of being able to bill insurance directly for adolescent services and should have answers to this question later in the year. This has always been the intent with the program. However, the process was slowed as the Alcohol and Drug Council began to discuss dissolution. We are confident that this process will be able to be completed and will provide additional revenues.

Other sources:We have created partnerships with Hazelden Educational Publishing and are receiving commissions on product sales for many items related to bullying and violence prevention and substance abuse. Additional partnerships with Hazelden generate revenues through training.

STARS is in the final stages of being reviewed by the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices NREPP).  Our review should be completed by the middle of 2012 (April/May) and if our scoring is positive, and we believe it will be, a national market for training and distribution will be opened. STARS SAP would be the only Student Assistance Program in the nation to have been through this rigorous process of review. We are already presenting at two national conferences this fall where the evaluation highlights of the last 14 years will be reviewed. Financial Comments
Financial figures taken from 990 and audit. 
Foundation and Corporate contributions included in the Individuals sum as they are not separated in the 990.
Financial documents prepared by Puryear, Hamilton, Hausman & Wood PLC.
Comments provided by Eric Leibrandt 2/10/2015
Nonprofit STARS Nashville
Address 1704 Charlotte Avenue
Suite 200
Nashville, TN 37203
Primary Phone (615) 279-0058
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Rodger Dinwiddie
Board Chair Ms. Jillian Waters
Board Chair Company Affiliation C3 Consulting, LLC
Year of Incorporation 1984
Former Names
Center for Youth Issues, INC.
Project 714
Students Staying Straight

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