About Us


The Center for Rural Strategies is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization founded in 2001. Our headquarters are in Whitesburg, Kentucky, in the Central Appalachian coalfields.



Kentucky Office:
46 East Main Street
Whitesburg, KY 41858
Phone: (606) 632-3244
Fax: (606) 632-3243

East Tennessee Office:
2927 Essary Drive
Suite 201
Knoxville, TN 37918
Phone: (865) 688-9546
Fax: (865) 688-9596

Staff Directory

Dee Davis, President, (606) 632-3244
dee at ruralstrategies.org

Teresa Collins, Operations Coordinator, (606) 632-3244
teresa at ruralstrategies.org

Marty Newell, Chief Operating Officer (859) 351-8719
marty at ruralstrategies.org

Katharine Pearson Criss, Senior Fellow (865) 688-9546
katharine at ruralstrategies.org

Tim Marema, Vice President (865) 688-9546
tim at ruralstrategies.org

Shawn Poynter, Program Associate (865) 688-9546
shawn at ruralstrategies.org

Whitney Kimball Coe, Director, National Programs (865) 688-9546
whitney at ruralstrategies.org




The Center for Rural Strategies seeks to improve economic and social conditions for communities in the countryside and around the world through the creative and innovative use of media and communications. By presenting accurate and compelling portraits of rural lives and cultures, we hope to deepen public debate and create a national environment in which positive change for rural communities can occur.

Rural Strategies helps communities and nonprofit organizations incorporate media and communications into their work in support of strategic goals. We also design and implement information campaigns that educate the public about the problems and opportunities that exist in contemporary rural communities.

Rural Strategies publishes information about rural issues, works with press to assist them in the coverage of rural topics, and works with a wide range of partners to build a stronger voice on behalf of rural communities.

We believe that rural America's fate is interrelated to those of metropolitan and urban America. Building stronger rural communities helps the nation as a whole.