Our Alumni Association is dedicated to keeping our alumni informed, involved and interested in Tipton-Rosemark Academy.
Whether it's reconnecting with lifelong friends at a class reunion, attending a sporting event, supporting the annual fund, taking in a play or concert, participating in the numerous Homecoming activities, or sharing your expertise with current students, we encourage you to remain connected to your alma mater.
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College & Career Chats
TRA Alumni are being invited back to meet with our current high school students to discuss their college experience, majors and career paths.
- Mark Davidson '86
- Haley Thomas '16
- David Ray '04
- Sarah Burgess Holland '08
- Rachel Thomas '15
- Madison Cranford '15
- April (Grimmig) Phillips '07
- Roxanna Kimes '12
- Rachel Savage '11
- Austin Chambers '14
- Angie (Wells) Pyle '85
- Missy Ratliff-Mooney '05
- Taylor Fox '08
- Jason '93 & Matthew '20 Coats
- Wesley Haley ' 14
- Thomas Ratliff '07
- Aaron Wenger '04
- Olivia Smith '14
- Rebecca Downing '92
- Cary Vaughn '89
- Erin McGill Angel '08
- Will Garey '03
- Bradley Barker '10
- Kevin Ripski '05
- Scott Jones '02
- Kendall Downing '06
- Cole Creasy
- Anna Whitley Anderson '08
- Katie McGill Shirley '05
- Justin Hanson
Mark Davidson '86
Gen. Mark Davidson (class of 1986) started his career as a prosecutor straight out of law school (University of Memphis) in 1992 when District Attorney Betsy Rice hired him as an Assistant District Attorney in the 25th Judicial District. He began prosecuting cases in Tipton County, and within a year, Gen. Rice made him the lead and only prosecutor in Lauderdale County. Gen. Davidson remembers this as his time in the “deep end of the pool, trying all sorts of cases from DUI to murder. I swam more than I sank and got a lot of experience very quickly.”
Gen. Davidson later went to work for the Tennessee Attorney General’s Office handling criminal cases on appeal and eventually death penalty cases. He was able to return to the District Attorney’s Office in 2011 as Deputy District Attorney before being appointed District Attorney General in September of 2017. He was then elected District Attorney in August of 2018. The 25th Judicial District serves Fayette, Hardeman, Lauderdale, McNairy and Tipton counties.
Gen. Davidson and his wife, Suzanne, have been married for 25 years and live in Covington, TN. They have three daughters, Allison (class of 2019), Emma Kate (class of 2020) and Tori (currently in 8th grade.) Allison and Emma Kate both attend the University of Mississippi. Suzanne serves as Advancement Director at TRA.
Haley Thomas '16
Upon leaving Tipton Rosemark, Hailey Thomas (Class of 2016) attended Delta State University. While there, she was involved in many organizations such as the Baptist Student Union and also Greek life as a member of Phi Mu. Through the Baptist Student Union, Hailey was able to serve in many places voluntarily, such as Canada, Australia, Indianapolis and more. She feels that the mission trip to the Dominican Republic with TRA sparked her love for service outside of the United States. Hailey graduated from Delta State in May of 2020 with a degree in Elementary Education.
After graduating, she applied to work for a Christian ministry called NICS/OASIS where they send missionaries around the world to be teachers in countries where better education opportunities are needed. Hailey now lives in Prishtina, Kosovo as a third grade teacher, helping to shape young lives for the better. She loves being able to teach in a classroom where she learns just as much as they do! They help her to grow and she helps them to grow.
Hailey’s advice to current students is to “honor God in all that they do. Whether they are teaching, designing buildings, cutting hair, or nursing people back to health, do it for God’s glory. There’s nothing more rewarding.”
David Ray '04
David Ray graduated from TRA in 2004. He went on to graduate from University of the Ozarks (Clarksville, AR) with a Bachelor's degree in Communication and Political Science. David spent the next 10 years working in electoral politics and issue advocacy. He has managed three campaigns for Congress, a statewide race for attorney general, and served as a senior advisor and communications director on the 2014 U.S. Senate campaign in Arkansas for U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton. Since then, David was the executive of a statewide political non-profit, and from 2017-2020 served as Chief of Staff to Arkansas Lt. Governor Tim Griffin. In November of 2020, he was elected to the Arkansas House of Representatives and is currently serving in his first term. David loves finding solutions to problems and working to make Arkansas the best possible place to live, work, and raise a family.
In 2012, David married his wife Jessica and together have a three-year old daughter (Charlotte) and a one-year old son (William). His father (William Ray) graduated from TRA class of 1972 and his brothers (Robert and Nathan Ray) graduated from TRA class of 2008 and 2010, respectively.
David's advice to TRA students is "to take full advantage of all the opportunities TRA presents you, and do the same at whichever college you attend. Don't be a spectator; find something you want to try and get plugged in. It didn't seem like it at the time, but everything I did, whether it was playing football or acting in a school drama helped equip me for the road ahead by giving me the confidence to compete and achieve my goals. "
Sarah Burgess Holland '08
Sarah Burgess Holland graduated from TRA in 2008 and went to University of Memphis for her Bachelors of Marketing Management. Her first job out of college was at ADP selling software. With quick success, she then continued on to obtain a Master of Information Science in Cybersecurity and Master of Business Administration from the University of Memphis while working as a Technical Solution Architect. She co-founded a non-profit with other women tech leaders in the Memphis area to fund education, certifications, and offered networking for women in technology careers. Her career then offered her to move to Denver, Colorado in 2019 where she currently resides working as the Manager of Strategic Alliances in North America for a startup tech company.
Sarah enjoys outdoor activities with her 9 year old daughter such as hiking, camping, backpacking, rock climbing, skiing, and working with local rescue horses. She also works as an adjunct instructor at a local college teaching classes in technology. Her piece of advice to current TRA students would be “to make your own path and not follow the crowd. She never thought she would have such a successful and rewarding career in technology yet is so glad she stumbled down that path. There is so much opportunity that is overlooked by following what everyone else is doing and where they are going. Think for yourself and find a career that you truly enjoy. Also, find a hobby that gets you outside and working with your hands as nature and sun are essentials parts of life.”
Rachel Thomas '15
Since graduating from TRA in 2015, Rachel attended the University of Memphis and earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre with a concentration in Musical Theatre, graduating Magna Cum Laude with Honors. In her time there, she attended South Eastern Theatre Conferences (SETC) in Tennessee and Alabama, as well as attending a week-long intensive in New York City called "Open Jar Institute'', which is an experience for actors to travel to New York and train with Broadway professionals. Throughout college, she also interned with the Orpheum Theatre Group's Summer Camp Series for two years serving as a Group Leader for their 3rd-5th grade and 6th-8th grade camps.
After graduating from the U of M in the Spring of 2019, she was blessed with the opportunity of coming back to TRA to assistant teach 3K for a year which was such a rewarding experience. Now, she is proud to work for Chad Stewart & Associates, Inc. (CSA) as their Front Office Administrator and Marketing Assistant. She is thankful to work at CSA with such wonderful people in an amazing work atmosphere.
In her free time, she enjoys assisting Mrs. Lalania Vaughn with Fine Arts productions at TRA, a program that she was so blessed to be a part of in her high school years.
Her advice to any current students at TRA would be "to always be kind to others, cherish the friendships you make at TRA, always make a point to say thank you to your teachers, and never be afraid of trying something new. You'd be surprised at what you're capable of when you take a leap of faith."
Do you want to share your story with our TRA community? Please be sure to update your contact information at
Madison Cranford '15
Madison Cranford (class of 2015) graduated from Christian Brothers University in 2019 with a degree in Liberal Studies. After graduating from college, Madison accepted a position with FedEx Services as an HR Associate on their HR Foundations Program. The HRF program is a 2 year rotational program where team members rotate every three months to support different Human Resource Departments. After completing rotations in Recruitment, Learning and Development, College Connections, and HR Enterprise Systems, she accepted a promotion into the Enterprise Engagement and Development team as a Learning and Development Specialist. In her new role she is the program lead for the New Employee Orientation Program for FedEx Services and FedEx Corporate. While working from home can sometimes have its barriers, Madison loves her job and being able to onboard employees from all over the country. Her favorite part of her position is having the opportunity to be one of the first faces that new employees get to see (even if it is virtual) and being able to play a part in the excitement of their first few days at their new jobs.
One piece of advice that Madison has for TRA students and families would be "to hold onto the friendships and connections you make in this community. I am incredibly thankful for the people who have loved me and supported me since my very first day at TRA and I hold those friendships very close to my heart."
April (Grimmig) Phillips '07
April (Grimmig) Phillips graduated from Tipton-Rosemark Academy in 2007. She received her bachelor of business administration and master of liberal arts from the University of Memphis. She was a member of Kappa Delta Sorority and the Sports Marketing Association.
After graduation, April held a number of jobs - inside sales for the Memphis Grizzlies, account manager of special events for the Washington Nationals Baseball Club and meeting planner for LEO Events.
April currently works for International Paper and serves as a Communications Specialist for Enterprise Operational Excellence where she is responsible for managing and supporting global communications for business leaders in environment, health and safety; fiber supply, information technology, manufacturing technology, sourcing and supply chain.
April is also the co-owner of Grind Properties with fellow TRA alum Thomas Ratliff and a licensed real estate agent with Bryan Realty Group.
April spends her spare time volunteering with West Cancer Center and taking her dogs to Shelby Farms Park. She currently resides in East Memphis with her husband, Brandon.
April would advise current students "to not be afraid to take risks and experience multiple types of jobs. No one knows what they want to do when they graduate high school - sometimes even college. It’s okay to not have everything figured out and to let the experiences come your way. Be open to these experiences and go all-in. "
Roxanna Kimes '12
Since Roxanna Kimes graduated TRA in 2012, she played college softball for 2 years at Northwest Mississippi Community College and studied Biology. When her time was up at Northwest, Roxanna went on to continue her studies at Delta State University. While at Delta State, she was an active member of Kappa Delta Sorority. She graduated in 2016 with her Bachelors of Science in Biology. Roxanna was then accepted into Vanderbilt University Medical Centers Nuclear Medicine Technology program, where she graduated as Student Technologist of the Year. Upon graduation in 2018, she accepted a full time job at Vanderbilt in their Nuclear Medicine department. Roxanna has also completed her Masters of Business Administration with a concentration in Healthcare. She has recently accepted a new job with Novartis as a Radiogland Therapy Specialist. Roxanna is fortunate enough to help out patients and also travel while doing so. She mentions “it is truly amazing to be able to work at a global company like Novartis! I can’t wait to see what the future has in store.”
Roxanna’s current advice to current students is “to actively pursue your dreams. Never let the fear of failure hold you back. Work hard day in and day out! “
Rachel Savage '11
Rachel Savage (class of 2011) graduated from the University of Memphis in 2015 with a Bachelor's of Science in Mathematics. This summer she will graduate from University of Tennessee at Martin with a Master's of Education in Curriculum and Instruction. Rachel is currently in her sixth year of teaching at Haywood High School in Brownsville, TN.
Currently, Rachel teaches a variety of classes: Statewide Dual Credit Precalculus, Statewide Dual Credit Statistics, AP Computer Science Principles, Computer Science Discoveries, Mobile App Development, and ACT Prep. Rachel's coworkers and students are the best parts of her job. Rachel mentions "Haywood is a family, just like TRA. " Rachel also recently received a TVA grant to expand Haywood High School's Computer Science Program.
Rachel's advice to current TRA students is to "Soak up every moment with your teachers! My teachers saved me on many occasions in college (and still do today). There are so many lessons, academic and life, that you will learn from them. "
Austin Chambers '14
Austin Chambers (class of 2014) is currently the Assistant Director of Player Development for the University of Georgia Football team. Austin graduated from the University of Tennessee Cum Laude in 2018 with a degree in Business Management. He was a manager for the UT Football team from Spring of 2015 to Spring of 2018. After graduating from UT Austin accepted an intern job at Georgia and eventually transitioned full time into the role he is in now. Austin just finished his 3rd season at UGA. The thing he loves most about his job is getting to connect with the football student athletes and build lasting relationships with them that go way beyond the football field. Seeing the players grow over the years while they're at Georgia is the most rewarding part of his job.
Austin helped co-start several different community outreach objectives at Georgia. He has also been apart of two SEC East Champion teams and two time News Years 6 Bowl Champion teams(Sugar Bowl and Peach Bowl Champs).
Austin's advice to current TRA students is "to always build relationships and don't be afraid to take chances, treating people well and getting to genuinely know people can go a long way and don't let little obstacles get in the way of your bigger goals."
Angie (Wells) Pyle '85
Angie (Wells) Pyle (class of 1985) is an engineer at Ford Motor Company designing Air Induction Systems for future model vehicles. Because of the pandemic, she is working from home, but regularly meets with team members around the planet (Australia, India, Brazil, Mexico, and UK) to develop vehicles and associated systems.
In Angie's career, she has been able to spend time overseas, living in England for 3 years and working with many suppliers throughout Europe. Angie is also the VP and CFO of Pyle Consulting Group, Inc., a small consulting company focusing on leadership development and change management for individuals and organizations.
Angie's biggest accomplishment is that she has been married to her husband, Rob for 27 years. They live in a suburb outside of Detroit and have two children, Andrew (22) and Julia (19). They enjoy getting together with their friends for game nights, and on special occasions, Rob and Andrew will smoke some Memphis style BBQ.
Angie's advice for the current students is "I came to Rosemark in 9th grade, and when I graduated, Rosemark recognized the 13-year club – those students that had been together from Kindergarten through Senior Year. Half of my class was recognized. It is not easy to be an “outsider” and to be new to a group. But our class of 41 seniors were very close, and I truly enjoyed my time there. Don’t be afraid to spread your wings and try something new. If you are called to move away for college, then do your best to move away. You can always come home later! For me, the world is filled with friends whom I have not yet met. I hope you will look out to the world and see the opportunity to learn something new, find out that you have more in common with others than you realize, and generally, you are the only one putting barriers in your way. Work hard, have a goal, and you will accomplish great things!"
Missy Ratliff-Mooney '05
Since graduating in 2005, Dr. Missy Ratliff-Mooney has been quite busy. Upon graduating from TRA, Missy went on to study Biology and Chemistry at Union University. While at Union she was an active member of the Chi Omega Sorority and Young Life Ministry. After graduation from Union, Missy worked in several doctors offices and went on medical mission trips to Honduras. Once accepted into East Tennessee State University Medical School Missy and her husband moved to Johnson City, TN to complete her education. Missy is currently a hospitalist at Jackson General Hospital in Jackson, TN and is the mother of two beautiful children. Her advice to any TRA student would be to learn as much as possible and remember to help others before you help yourself.
Taylor Fox '08
After graduating TRA, Taylor Fox (class of 2008) attended Middle Tennessee State University, where he majored in Accounting with a minor in Business Administration. Taylor resides in East Memphis with his wife, Sarah, and their children, Paxton and Riley.
He was hired by Helena Agri-Enterprises, LLC in September 2014 at their Corporate office in Collierville, TN as an Internal Auditor. As an Internal Auditor, his job was to perform audit engagements related to financial, operations, and compliance at retail stores across the country.
In 2017 he was promoted to Senior Internal Auditor, where his job duties extended to leading complex financial, operations, and compliance engagements at their retail stores across the country. He also joined the financial due diligence team for Helena’s acquisitions across the country.
In 2019 he was promoted again to Manager of Internal Audit. He now manages the Internal Audit activity for the Internal Audit Department at Helena. Taylor is responsible for ensuring that the department provides reasonable assurance that controls are in place and functioning. He is also responsible for overseeing investigations, specialty audits, and performing audits of Helena’s subsidiaries.
Taylor is a Certified Internal Auditor, a Certified Fraud Examiner, and holds a Certification in Risk Management Assurance.
Taylor's advice for current TRA students would be "to work as hard as you can to accomplish your goals. Life after high school and college can be challenging and test your limits. As long as you persevere and set your mind to being successful, you’ll be able to do whatever you want to professionally."
Taylor also comes from a long line of TRA alumni:
- Grandfather, William Thompson: went to TRA in the 1940s
- Mother, Alison (Thompson) Fox: Class of 1980
- Aunt, Kathryn (Thompson) Jackson: Class of 1980
- Uncle, Bill Thompson: Class of 1984
- Sister, Lauren Fox: Class of 2009
- Brother, Jordan Fox: Class of 2011
Jason '93 & Matthew '20 Coats
Football season may be over, but we are still celebrating our Alumni! Pictured is Jason Coats (class of 1993) and his two sons, Matthew (class of 2020) and Evan (class of 2021) after this year’s Football Homecoming game.
Jason attended Union University and is currently a Financial Advisor for Edward Jones in Brighton, TN. Jason is married to Rachel, who teaches second grade at TRA.
Matthew is attending Arkansas State Mid-South. He has earned his machining certification and is now pursuing a certification as a diesel mechanic.
Evan plans on attending Mississippi State University in the fall and majoring in Computer Engineering.
We are proud of the legacy we are building at TRA and thankful for these great families.
TRA wants to hear from you! If you haven't done so already please be sure to update your contact information at
Wesley Haley ' 14
Wesley Haley (class of 2014) currently works for City of Memphis Public Works as a Lift Station Maintenance Helper. He has a great job that he loves. Wesley is also thankful to be classified as an essential worker because of the type of work he does for the city and that he was able to keep working throughout the pandemic. His job entails keeping the sewer lift stations throughout the city up and running in any weather condition, 24/7.
Wesley has also been able to follow his dream for the past 4-5 years as a rodeo/barrel race announcer and now has his own company, Diamond W Productions Announcing and Sound. He has been blessed enough to travel from New York to Mississippi and many other states announcing barrel races. He looks forward to growing his business and getting into doing it professionally.
Wesley's advice to current students is "don’t try to rush life and grow up too fast, enjoy your years in high school with your friends while you can, it goes by faster than you think!"
Thank you, Wesley for your dedication to the city of Memphis and surrounding areas during the pandemic. TRA appreciates your service.
Thomas Ratliff '07
Thomas Ratliff (class of 2007) is the owner of Ramon's Meat Company, a Partner at Grind Properties 901 and an Affiliate Broker at Bryan Realty Group. After graduating from TRA, Thomas attended the University of Memphis (class of 2011) where he was actively involved in the Emerging Leaders Scholarship Program and Sigma Chi Fraternity. While at the U of M he majored in Liberal Arts and History. Thomas has also graduated from Northwest Mississippi Community College and serves on the MS Board of Funeral Directors.
Thomas is known as an avid snow skier (24 days on the mountains this year and still counting) and is currently finishing up his private pilot license. Thomas' advice to current TRA students would be to listen often and speak little, grow your network and cherish the TRA family and experiences as much as possible. Some of his favorite TRA memories would be the classes that Gail Davidson and Robin Larabee taught, cheer camp and homecoming weeks.
Aaron Wenger '04
Aaron Wenger (class of 2004) is a farmer in Iowa. His family raises corn, soybeans, and alfalfa in Elgin a small community of 650 people in Northeast Iowa. He also raises beef cattle, background feedlot cattle, and finishes 12,500 head of pigs yearly in confinement barns. Aaron is a Beck’s Hybrids Seed Dealer.
Aaron's wife, Kali is a four year old pre-school teacher and Director of the Pre-School/Daycare in the community. They share three boys: Broc (7), Aksel (5), and Niko (3). All three boys are active on the farm and enjoy their dog, cats, collecting chicken eggs daily and look forward to showing their cattle every summer at the local fair with their Clover Kid 4H club.
Aaron and his family moved to Tennessee through his dad's Naval post in Millington. Aaron remembers that moving all the time growing up was a challenge, but getting acclimated to TRA was easy and his brother and him quickly were welcomed. Aaron says "I enjoy fondly the great friendships that were fostered and the camaraderie gained through sports, especially football. Graduating in 2004 our teams helped re-instill winning football at TRA."
Olivia Smith '14
Olivia Smith (Class of 2014) attended the University of Mississippi, where she majored in psychology and minored in communications. She pledged Phi Mu Fraternity and participated in many leadership activities that lead her to the career path of occupational therapy. Sponsored by Phi Mu, Olivia placed top 10 in the Ole Miss Parade of Beauties pageant, at the University of Mississippi. Olivia is also a former Miss Oxford USA.
Olivia finished undergrad at the University of Memphis. She served as a morale captain for Up ‘til Dawn, an organization at the University of Memphis that benefits St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. She served as the Alumni Relations Director on the UTD Executive Board. Here, she contributed to over $229K for the kids of St. Jude through various fundraising events. She was also an intern at ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in the Dream Home Department. Olivia graduated with academic honors of Summa Cum Laude and received a B.A. in psychology with a minor in communications.
Olivia is now pursuing a master’s degree in occupational therapy at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. She is actively involved in numerous associations. She is pursuing a career in occupational therapy to positively impact an individual’s quality of life. She wants to help others reach their goals, restore independence, and improve their abilities to participate in meaningful activities.
Olivia’s advice to current students is to always keep Christ in the center of every decision that you make. Allow God to lead you in the path that has been uniquely designed for you. Don’t be afraid of challenges that may arise. Sometimes stepping out of your comfort zone can be the best way to gain a rich learning experience. “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -Jeremiah 29:11
Rebecca Downing '92
Rebecca Downing (Class of 1992) is a very familiar face at TRA. Rebecca has worked at TRA since 1998 and has worn many different hats during her time. She was in charge of the first Capital Campaign that built the current Middle School Building and Gymnasium. Rebecca has also served in the roles of the Director of Admissions and Development and High School Secretary. She is currently a Teacher assistant in the Preschool Program and the After School Care Director
Rebecca’s love for the school goes deep. Her grandparents were one of the founding families that started TRA in 1965, Billy Carl and Doris Billings. Rebecca and her husband, Davin have been married for 26 years and share 5 children. All of their children have either graduated from TRA or are currently enrolled as students.
Sally Wilson (Class of 2014) is employed by Peds East as an RN, BSN and is married to Jordan Wilson (Class of 2012) who is employed as an insurance agent with Colin Pinner AllState. The couple is expecting their first child in a couple of months.
Sarah Kate Downing (Class of 2016) is currently employed by TRA and has a daughter, Katie Gray who is in the 2K Preschool Program at TRA.
Sydney Downing (Class of 2019) is employed by Tipton County Schools and is a full time student at Dyersburg State.
Beau Downing is currently a sophomore at TRA.
Dawson Downing is currently a 2nd grader at TRA.
Rebecca, TRA is grateful for you and for your years of service and dedication to the school! Thank you for building a lasting legacy!
Cary Vaughn '89
Cary Vaughn (class of 1989) is the CEO and President of Love Worth Finding Ministries, Inc. which is a worldwide radio, TV and internet ministry reaching 196 countries. LWF is a mass communications ministry, with exposure across all social media platforms, and broadcasting on 2,500 radio outlets. He led the LWF 30th Anniversary Campaign, and he serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors for LWF Canada.
Cary has served with the State of Tennessee, Department of Economic and Community Development representing the Southwest Region. In addition, he chaired the Shelby County Suburban Chamber Alliance for 5 years, working in a collaborative effort to promote the rural communities. He is an active board member and Secretary of the Greater Memphis Alliance for a Competitive Workforce, and he currently serves on the EDGE Board of Directors for Memphis and Shelby County.
Cary also participates with several boards, commissions and is currently the pastor of Community Baptist Church. He has held multiple leadership roles in several religious organizations. He is a lifetime member of NRA, University of Memphis Alumni Association, WestStar Alumni Association, Kappa Sigma Alumni Association, and the Republican National Committee. Cary has also served on the board of directors for TRA.
He and his wife, Lalania (TRA Director of Fine Arts) have been married for 28 years, and they have two children Logan and Colton, both of who graduated from TRA.
Thank you to the Vaughn family for your dedication and service to TRA and the community. We are proud of your accomplishments!
Erin McGill Angel '08
Erin McGill Angel, Class of 2008 attended UT Martin and graduated with her BSN in 2012. Since then, she has worked as a labor and delivery RN for the last 8 years. Erin is currently employed at West Tennessee Healthcare Volunteer Hospital in Martin.
Thank you to all our Alums that are nurses and who are making a difference in the lives of so many. We are so grateful for the service and care you give each and every day.
Will Garey '03
Will Garey was a student at Tipton-Rosemark Academy from K-12 and graduated in 2003. In high school, he played football, basketball and tennis, while also acting in plays with the drama club. Will was also selected as Mr. TRA.
Some of his best memories of Rosemark include coming home on the team buses after a football win on Friday night and the annual field days. Will attended college at Middle Tennessee State University, where he majored in Aerospace and was a member of Sigma Nu Fraternity. He received his Multi-Engine Commercial pilot ratings there and graduated in 2008.
Will was selected for his pilot slot from the Air Force in 2014 and received training in the T-6 and T-1 while in pilot training. Will is currently a ranked Captain and flies the most current C-130 ( the “C-130J” model) for the 815th Airlift Squadron out of Keesler AFB in Biloxi, Mississippi. Will's favorite mission so far has been flying 6 aircraft formation over the beaches of Normandy for the 72nd and 73rd anniversary of the D-Day invasion of WW2.
Will's advice to current students is something his dad and grandad used to always tell him. "Never be a stranger to anyone when you are around people, always make a conscious effort to always introduce or say hello to everyone you see or meet." Will says that "Being that friendly face that everyone knows has paid off for me many times over the years."
Bradley Barker '10
Bradley Barker (class of 2010) attended Mississippi State University where he studied Mechanical engineering for two years. Bradley then made the switch to Biology and finished his last 2 years of undergrad at the University of Memphis. Bradley went on to pursue his Doctorate of Physical Therapy at Tennessee State University in Nashville, TN.
Bradley has worked as a traveling outpatient PT, and currently works for a home health company servicing the greater Nashville area. He is currently working towards his Geriatric Certified Specialization to help better serve the geriatric population.
Bradley's advice to current students would be to always keep an open mind about your future. He spent two years chasing a profession that he thought was right for him based on standardized testing and recommendations, but his heart just wasn’t in it. It was well worth the extra time and effort that he had to put in to chase a dream he was much more passionate about. It’s never too late to pursue a career that you feel is the perfect fit for you!
Bradley, TRA is proud of you, your accomplishments, and for listening to your heart and following your dreams!
Kevin Ripski '05
Kevin Ripski graduated from TRA in 2005. During his Senior year he enlisted in the US Navy and served 4 years as an Interior Communications Electrician, stationed aboard the USS Nimitz. Kevin was Honorably Discharged in September 2009. Once back in the civilian world, he received his Bachelors of Business Administration with a major in Accounting from the University of Memphis.
Kevin works for the Corps of Engineers and is the Chief Supervisor of the Military Eliminations and Cash Reports Branch.
Kevin advice to current students is " Do not get distracted by the world. Set your goals, manage your time wisely, and learn from your mistakes."
Scott Jones '02
Scott Jones is a graduate of the class of 2002. He attended the University of Memphis and received a B.A. degree. Throughout his undergrad, he worked almost yearly for Memphis in May. Scott was able to land a job doing marketing tours around the country at major outdoor music festivals including Bonnaroo, Coachella, South by Southwest, and Wakarusa to name a few.
Scott later decided to go back to school to pursue a legal degree. He attended Mississippi College School of Law and graduated in May of 2017. In his final two semesters, Scott was named to the Dean’s list and was a member of the Family Law Society and Sports & Entertainment Law Society. In July he attempted the Uniform Bar Exam and passed in every jurisdiction in the country and scored in the top 5% in the country on the Multistate Bar Exam portion of the test. Scott is currently working towards gaining licensure in Arkansas, Tennessee and Washington D.C.
Scott is currently living in Rosemark and is partnering with his brother Bill (class of 1994) to practice law in Memphis. His niece Mallory attends TRA and is the daughter of Matt Jones (class of 1997). Scott is an avid golfer, has helped the Rosemark community in defeating a proposed gravel mine and even appeared in a few episodes of Bluff City Law as a background extra.
Scott loves the lessons he learned from Rosemark and the teachers, Marsha Kuykendall is his favorite. Scott says “the fact that all of what TRA has to offer is grounded in Christian beliefs is an aspect you can’t put a price tag on.”
Kendall Downing '06
Kendall Downing (class of 2006) is a reporter at WMC-TV Action News 5, the NBC affiliate in Memphis. He’s worked in television news for 10 years, with reporting jobs in Kentucky, Indianapolis and finally back home in Memphis. His work has won multiple journalism awards in Kentucky and Indiana.
He obtained a bachelor’s degree from The University of Tennessee - Knoxville in 2010, where he studied Journalism & Electronic Media. He graduated from The University of Memphis in August 2020 with a master’s degree in business administration.
He is grateful for his time spent at TRA and the lifetime of memories made there. He comes from a long line of TRA alums. Both parents (Donna Breen, Mike Downing, class of 1979), his sister Kaitlyn Downing Britton (class of 2011), and his uncle Jimmy Breen (class of 1984). His grandfather Don Breen is in the TRA Hall of Fame.
Pictured is Kendall reading to a 3rd grade class in 2019. Thank you Kendall for coming back and investing in the children of TRA!
Cole Creasy is currently a senior at the University of Memphis, where he is working towards a degree in Journalism with a concentration in Creative Mass Media with an emphasis on Graphic Design. Even though he's still in college, he is already doing BIG things! Cole has done work for Paramount, Verizon, Choose 901, and various local business. He is also an amazing photographer who has captured the faces of famous musicians.
He has won three awards from the University of Memphis: Advertising Rookie of the Year, Best Print Advertising Award, and Outstanding Media Photographer.
Anna Whitley Anderson '08
Anna Whitley Anderson (class of 2008) has been a nurse at LeBonheur hospital for seven years. TRA is proud of her accomplishments and her dedication to the healthcare system.
Anna’s daughter is currently enrolled in 4K and her sister, Jordan (class of 2001) is an elementary teacher at TRA. Thank you for keeping our tradition strong!
Katie McGill Shirley '05
Katie McGill Shirley (class of 2005) is a Physical Therapist at LeBonheur Hospital in Memphis. TRA is thankful for her service and dedication to her patients during the pandemic. Today we celebrate you and your servant heart.
We are excited that Katie’s daughter will be joining the wonderful TRA preschool program next year.