NASHVILLE, Tenn. (February 13, 2024)—Five new board members have been elected to the Frist Art Museum Board of Trustees. The new members are Phillip G. Billington, Ramon L. Cisneros, Donald R. Hardin Jr., Dee Patel, and Tara Scarlett.
Phillip G. Billington is senior vice president of Internal Audit Services for Nashville-based HCA Healthcare, one of the nation’s leading providers of healthcare services. Billington oversees HCA Healthcare’s Internal Audit Department, which is responsible for auditing financial reporting controls, facility financial statements, revenue cycle processes, information system controls and compliance with regulatory policies. He is also responsible for the enterprise risk office and business continuity planning of HCA Healthcare.
Billington is an 18-year veteran of HCA Healthcare and previously served as vice president of internal audit. Prior to HCA Healthcare, he worked as a managing director for FTI Consulting, Inc., a director for KPMG LLP and was a senior manager at Arthur Andersen LLP.
Billington currently serves on the board of Abe’s Garden Alzheimer’s and Memory Care Center. He is a Certified Public Accountant with an MBA and an undergraduate degree in Accounting from Murray State University. He is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Tennessee Society of Certified Public Accountants.
Ramon L. Cisneros is the owner and CEO of Millennium Marketing LLC, which operates as a communications bridge connecting businesses and institutions with Tennessee’s vibrant Latino Community. With a career spanning over two decades in media, marketing, and advertising, Cisneros has consistently demonstrated an unwavering commitment to advancing diversity, inclusion, and fostering cultural understanding. As the founder of La Campana, Nashville’s oldest Spanish language newspaper, and a former partner at Univision Nashville, Cisneros has been instrumental in pioneering Latino journalism in Music City. As a highly regarded thought leader and influencer, he has also made numerous media appearances raising awareness of the Latino community.
Cisneros has been deeply involved in the Nashville community serving on numerous boards of directors for organizations including Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital, the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, Middle Tennessee YMCA, and the Nashville Red Cross. As an Eagle Scout, he is especially proud of having served on the board of directors of the Middle Tennessee Council of the Boy Scouts of America. Cisneros’s passion for the arts has led him to service on the boards of the Arts & Business Council of Greater Nashville (where he was a founding member), the Nashville Symphony, Nashville Opera, and Cheekwood Estate & Gardens. His active involvement with the Marketing and Community Councils of the Frist Art Museum, the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, and the Franklin Theatre has enriched the cultural fabric of Middle Tennessee.
Cisneros was recognized as one of Nashville’s Top 50 Power Houses during the bicentennial celebration and was named one of Williamson County’s 20 most influential individuals by the Nashville Business Journal. Additionally, he was honored with the ADA 2006 Father of the Year Award. Cisneros is a Graduate of Leadership Nashville (Class of 2004), Leadership Music (Class of 2011), and Leadership Franklin (Class of 2013). He attended the University of Tennessee at Martin and continued his education at the University of Central Florida in Orlando, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering and completed post-graduate studies in Business Administration. Ramon and his wife, Debbie, have four children and eight grandchildren and have lived in Tennessee for more than 30 years.
Donald R. Hardin Jr. is co-owner and manager of DON HARDIN GROUP, a construction management firm based in Nashville that serves Fortune 500 clientele across the country as well community-based organizations. Born and raised in Nashville, Hardin has more than 29 years of construction experience and is a licensed general contractor in Tennessee as well as a certified Project Management Professional. Since 2001, DON HARDIN GROUP has significantly performed on projects including the Music City Center, the National Museum of African American Music, First Tennessee Baseball Park, Vanderbilt University Commons, Vanderbilt University Athletics, HCA’s ADA compliance, Mt. Zion Baptist Church and Meharry Medical College’s Turner Family Center, First Tennessee Baseball Park, Intel Corporation Fab Expansion, and Nissan North American in Canton, MS.
After graduating from Tennessee State University with a degree in the Architectural Engineering program, Hardin accepted a position with the Fluor Corporation, where he managed various prime and sub-contractors and worked as structural designer on many projects across the United States. He has cofounded other successful ventures such as Harmony Construction Group and DASCH, a New Mexico-based project management firm serving the hi-tech industry. Most recently, he cofounded Campaign Do Work that will provide creative gear, including reflective apparel and accessories, for the construction workplace and play space alike.
Hardin has been an active volunteer for many years and currently serves on the board of American Baptist College, Oz Arts, Buchanan Street Arts, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, and the Center for Nonprofit Management. He previously served on the boards of the Green Hills YMCA, Y-Build Program, Nashville Classical Charter School, the Procurement Standards Board, and was a commissioner for the Metro Arts Commission. Hardin is also a Life Member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., and a member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity (Boule). He and his wife Tracy Kirk Hardin, who has served as Chief Financial Officer for the DON HARDIN GROUP for more than 16 years, have one son, Donald Hardin III, who has recently joined the DON HARDIN GROUP as Business Development Manager. Hardin’s hobbies include traveling with Tracy, running, hiking, collecting vinyl records, and being a soccer enthusiast.
Dee Patel is managing director of The Hermitage Hotel, where she is responsible for running all aspects of the company and guiding the strategic direction of the hotel. Appointed to her position in 2019, Patel is the first female managing director in The Hermitage Hotel’s 113-year history. Patel began her career at The Hermitage Hotel in the rooms division and quickly rose through the ranks. Her earlier career experience includes management roles at the hotel’s sister property, Keswick Hall, in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Patel serves leadership roles in several national organizations advancing tourism and the hospitality industry. Her service includes membership on the Board of Advisors for Historic Hotels of America and the American Hotel & Lodging Association and on civic boards and organizations, including the Nashville’s Agenda Steering Committee, the Nashville Downtown Partnership Board, and the Nashville Convention Center Authority. Patel also serves as an advisor for Centennial Park Conservancy and the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, is on the board of directors for the Music City Center, and is chair of the Greater Nashville Hospitality Association.
She was named among the most powerful people in Nashville’s business community by the Nashville Business Journal in 2023, 2022, and 2021; Outstanding Woman Hotelier of the Year award presented by the Asian American Hotel Owners Association; Nashville Lifestyles’ 2021 Women in Business; NFocus’ 2021 Most Powerful Women; and Best Historic Steward of 2022 by Nashville Scene. She also serves on the board of the Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee and is a member of the International Women’s Forum of Tennessee. Patel graduated magna cum laude from Johnson & Wales University, in Charleston, South Carolina. In her off-time, she enjoys family travel, exploring new cuisine, and spending time with her husband and their two children, embracing the culture and traditions of the places she visits.
Tara Scarlett serves as president and chief executive officer of the Scarlett Family Foundation, a Middle Tennessee-based foundation working to ensure all students have access to a high-quality education. She has been an active advocate for education reform for twenty years and has served as a Foundation board member since its founding in 2005. Scarlett has an extensive private sector track record of innovative leadership and a proven ability to bring people together to achieve results. She pairs this experience with a passion for creating opportunity for students of all ages and backgrounds.
Under Scarlett’s leadership and direction, the Scarlett Family Foundation has made a major and meaningful impact on early literacy, public education, and college and career readiness and success across Middle Tennessee. Scarlett’s dedication to making a positive impact on the lives of students and families and to transform education has also led to her recent appointment as a Chairwoman for Tennessee Higher Education Commission, and as Chairwoman for Tennessee’s Education and Innovation Commission.
Scarlett also serves as a board member for Tennesseans for Quality Early Education, Communities in Schools of Tennessee, and Tennessee’s State Collaborative on Reforming Education (SCORE). She is a past board member and continued supporter of the YWCA, and chair of the Education Committee with the Nashville Zoo. She remains engaged in the business innovation space, serving as a board member for Studio Bank, and as an advisor for Synchronous Health. She is a member of International Women’s Forum, the Tennessee Learning Circle, and volunteered as a “Big” with the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program. Scarlett is an alumna of 2019 Leadership Nashville, 2019 Leadership Tennessee, and 2021 Harvard Young American Leaders Program.
Prior to joining the Scarlett Family Foundation in 2016, Scarlett spent 20 years in marketing leadership roles for two of the world’s largest consumer packaged goods companies: the Coca-Cola Company North America and Mars Petcare North America. Scarlett attended Scales Elementary, is a graduate of Harpeth Hall School, and holds a bachelor’s degree from Ohio Wesleyan University and a Master of Education Policy and Leadership from American University. She lives with her husband, two children, and two dogs in Nashville.
The Frist Art Museum is supported in part by The Frist Foundation, Metro Arts, the Tennessee Arts Commission, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
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