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Drive Electric TN Chapters

Members of the Appalachian Highlands DET Chapter at Drive Electric Earth Day event

Drive Electric TN (DET) Chapters are regional or local collections of plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) drivers and other partners who wish to expand the use of EVs in their community. DET cannot meet its goal of having 200,000 EVs on Tennessee roads without the successful work of these very important chapters. No one can do the outreach and education of area citizens and businesses like people from those communities.  

DET started working on Chapter development in earnest in 2020… and it takes some time to bring together such members and form a working team. Our current Chapters are:

Most of these Chapters are in the formative stages of development while others are more fully developed. The below map (click on it to see a larger version) provides a visual example of how Chapter development in Tennessee is proceeding but know that we are excited to work with any group of folks to develop a Chapter in your city or community! We hope that at least six Chapters are operational by the end of 2022.

If YOU want to help advance tailpipe-free driving in Tennessee, we invite you to join YOUR LOCAL Chapter – or start a Chapter – and see how you can get involved to make a difference for our beautiful state!

Appalachian Highlands Chapter

Northeast region of Tennessee, County map
People seeing electric vehicles at Drive Electric Earth Day Event

Appalachian Highlands Chapter (AHC) Members

  • EV DRIVERS
    Chris Bress – Tesla Model X
    Kenny Dick – Tesla Model 3
    Mark DiLuciano – Chevy Bolt
    Wes Franklin – Nissan Leaf
    John Frey – Nissan Leaf
    Adam Gray – Tesla Model 3
    Derek Guske – Mercedes-Benz B250e
    Keith Halberg – Chevy Volt
    Bill Horton – Ford Mustang MachE
    Brenda Hrivnak – RAV4 Prime
    David Hrivnak – Tesla Model 3
    Marti Morenings – Tesla Model Y
    Jacob Ratliff – Tesla Model 3
    David Riggs – Nissan Leaf
    Ken Roberts – BMW i3 REx
    Michael & Karen Trepiccione – Tesla Model 3
  • ORGANIZATIONAL & OTHER PARTNERS
    Tim Henley, City of Johnson City
    Clayton Dowell, Bristol TN Essential Services
    Jeff Dykes, BrightRidge
    Sam Ford, BrightRidge
    Ted Jackson, Green Interfaith Network
    Jodi Jones, Washington County Commissioner
    Chris Quillen, TVA
    Jason Smith, Appalachian Electric Power
    Paul Sutton, Renewable Energy
    Brandy Lemieux

AHC Information

Area: Northeast Tennessee, including the surrounding communities in southwest Virginia and northwestern North Carolina.

Counties covered: Hancock, Hawkins, Cocke, Greene, Washington, Sullivan, Carter, Unicoi, Johnson

Story: In early 2021, multiple partners stepped up to help form this Chapter. Jan Compton of TDEC’s Johnson City Environmental Field Office, Bonnie Donnolly of BrightRidge and David Hrivnak – a stalwart EV advocate from Kingsport – helped bring together others to support the Chapter’s development.

Media/Event links: DEED 2021 Bristol, DEED 2021 Kingsport

Upper Cumberland Chapter

County map of Upper Cumberland region of Tennessee
UCC photo Crossville NDEW

Upper Cumberland Chapter (UCC) Members

  • EV DRIVERS
  • ORGANIZATIONAL & OTHER PARTNERS
    Tara Wohlgemuth, TDEC

UCC Information

Area: The upper-middle section of Tennessee that abuts Kentucky and is centered out of Cookeville.

Counties covered: Macon, Smith, DeKalb, Cannon, Warren, Van Buren, White, Putnam, Jackson, Clay, Pickett, Overton, Fentress, Cumberland 

Story: In 2019, a DOE-funded project was begun that Tennessee Technological University (TNTech) created and won called “Developing an EV Demonstration Testbed in the Upper Cumberland (UC) Region of Tennessee.” Dr. Pingen Chen started that project, and it led into the kickoff of the Upper Cumberland Chapter. In 2020, the local TDEC Director of External Affairs for the region, Tara Wohlgemuth, started providing assistance in early chapter planning. This chapter is still garnering additional members and needs YOU to join if you are a UC EV driver!

Media/Event links: NDEW 2020 Cumberland Mtn State Park, DEED 2021 Cookeville

Greater Knoxville Chapter

Greater Knox Chapter counties
Knoxville Ride & Drive event

Greater Knoxville Chapter (GKC) Members

  • EV DRIVERS
    Eric Cardwell, Chevy Volt
    Susan & Jack Goodwin, 2 Tesla Model 3s
    Kent Minault, Nissan Leaf
    Stephen Jake Mounger, Zero SR/S motorcycle
    Bill Williams, Tesla Model S
    Russell Kennedy, Chevy Bolt
    Marty Young, Chevy Volt
    Kevin Hart, Tesla Model X
    Jamie Russell, Nissan Leaf
    Robert Finn, Tesla Model 3 Performance

  • ORGANIZATIONAL & OTHER PARTNERS
    Brian Blackmon, City of Knoxville Office of Sustainability
    Chasity Hobby, Knoxville Utilities Board

GKC Information

Area: The central section of east Tennessee.

Counties covered: Scott, Morgan, Roane, Loudon, Blount, Knox, Anderson, Campbell, Claiborne, Union, Sevier, Jefferson, Hamblen, Grainger

Story: KEVA has been operating in the greater Knoxville area for over a decade and is the core group that holds Ride & Drives in the area. To boot, they have been growing over the last few years and are currently the strongest group of EV owners in Tennessee that works on educating others. However, the Knoxville community has all kinds of active participants in the process of advocating for and furthering EV adoption, none the least of which is Knoxville Utilities Board (KUB). KUB released a incentive program – the first in Tennessee – that provides $400 if you purchase an EV and install a home charging unit.

Media/Event links:

TDEC, TVA seek fast charge TN network projects

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) and Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) have partnered to develop a statewide electric vehicle (EV) fast charging network to power the growth of EVs across Tennessee and reduce barriers…