Kingsport Chamber honors Betty DeVinney with distinguished Lifetime Member Award


KINGSPORT ‚¬ The Kingsport Chamber of Commerce honored longtime Kingsport community leader and retired Eastman executive Betty DeVinney with its prestigious Lifetime Member Award during its 68th Annual Dinner Friday night at the MeadowView Marriott Conference Resort & Convention Center.

DeVinney is the awards twenty-seventh recipient.

DeVinney retired in 2003 as senior vice president of Eastman with global responsibility for human resources, communications, public affairs and travel services.

It is with profound thanks and deep gratitude that we honor Betty DeVinney with your Kingsport Chambers Lifetime Member Award, said Andy Wampler, 2014 Kingsport Chamber chair and a shareholder with Wilson Worley.‚  Betty has devoted years of service in so many ways and in so many leadership roles to this community and she is certainly most deserving of this illustrious honor.

Betty DeVinney is the penultimate servant leader, said Miles Burdine, Kingsport Chamber president and CEO.‚  She has given tirelessly and with sincere passion of her time, talents and leadership for many, many years and she has made an enormous impact on this community.‚  Betty DeVinney best exemplifies the adage about the one who plants the seeds for whom tomorrows generation enjoys the shade.

The Kingsport Chamber Lifetime Member Award goes to an individual who has made an enormous contribution to the Kingsport Chamber and the community throughout his or her lifetime.

With the award, DeVinney receives complimentary membership to the Kingsport Chamber for life.

Betty DeVinney

A native of Laurel, Miss., DeVinney received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg in 1964. She completed the Executive Development Program at the University of Tennessee in 1993.‚  She is also a very proud recipient of an Honorary Degree from East Tennessee State University in 2003.

She began her career with Eastman in 1973 and held a number of leadership positions of increasing responsibility.‚  In 1998, she was named vice president for communications and public affairs and appointed to the Eastman executive team.‚  She then became senior vice president in 2002.

DeVinney has served in numerous leadership positions with several organizations, including the East Tennessee State University Foundation Board, the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kingsport Foundation, the East Tennessee State University Business Advisory Council, the University of Tennessee Chancellors Advisory Council, and the University of Southern Mississippi Business Advisory Council.

She was founding president of the Tri-Cities Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, led a community group to raise funds to build Darrells Dream, a $4 million Boundless Playground at Warriors Path State Park in Kingsport, and chaired the signature committee of Mountain States Foundation in an effort to raise funds to build a regional childrens hospital to serve the more than 250,000 children of the Tri-Cities.

Other areas where she has served include BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee chair, Northeast State Community College Foundation chair, the Barter Theatre capital campaign committee, president of the United Way of Greater Kingsport and 2000 campaign chair, Number One Committee chair, Tri-Cities Economic Summit co-chair, and president of Children of Tri-Cities.

Her other past board memberships also include Eastman Credit Union, Childrens Advocacy Center, Paramount Theatre, Junior Achievement of Tri-Cities TN/VA,‚  the Tri-Cities Regional Airport Commission, Volunteer Kingsport, Southern College Placement Association, Knoxville Sports Corporation, Holston Valley Medical Center, Mountain States Health Alliance, Mountain States Health Foundation, and the Tennessee State Commission on Workforce Development.

DeVinney also donated her incredible leadership talents to the Kingsport Chamber and served in several capacities, including chair of Fun Fest, Leadership Kingsport and Membership.

The Lifetime Member Award was created when she was membership chair.‚  During her year as Fun Fest chair, many new traditions were introduced, including Festus the Fun Fest mascot, the Fun Fest street flags and a second stage for Taste of Tri-Cities.

In 1997, DeVinney became the first female president of the Kingsport Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and was later president of the Kingsport Chamber of Commerce Foundation Board of Directors.

During her year as Kingsport Chamber president, MeadowView enjoyed its first year of operation.

She is also a 1989 graduate of Leadership Kingsport.

DeVinney has been honored on numerous occasions for her leadership and community involvement.

In 1990, she received the Alvah K. Borman award for outstanding contributions to Cooperative Education by the American Association of Engineering Education.‚  She was the 2002 recipient of the Mountain States Health Alliance Spirit Award and was also inducted into the East Tennessee State University College of Business Hall of Fame.‚  DeVinney was awarded Honorary Alumna Status at East Tennessee State University in 2003.

She has also received numerous other awards and accolades for her leadership and philanthropy in the Tri-Cities region.

She and her husband, George, reside in Kingsport and have one son, Dennis, and three grandchildren, Sydney, Maddox and Griffon.

We are so happy to present Betty DeVinney with this honor, Burdine commented.‚  Betty means so much to the Kingsport Chamber and the Kingsport community and we are forever grateful to her.

Other Kingsport Chamber Lifetime Member recipients include Wallace Alley, William C. Bovender, John W. Andersen, Sam H. Anderson, Jr., E. B. Blankenbeckler, Jeanette D. Blazier, Frank B. Brewer, Frank Brogden, A.B. Coleman, John Douglas, William D. Dudney, C.B. Boots Duke, IV, Eleanor Eason, Rodney D. Irvin, Farris Jackson, J. Lane Latimer III, Dr. William W. Locke, G. Payne Marshall, Ken Maness, Ron McMasters, Bob Miller, Charles Edward Moore, Mike O. ONeill, James P. Rogers, Darrell Rice and Keith D. Wilson.

The Kingsport Chamber 68th Annual Dinner had more than 100 corporate sponsors.‚  These included:

Title Sponsor: Eastman.

Host Sponsor: WJHL News Channel 11.

Entertainment Sponsor: Holston Valley Medical Center.

Concert Hall & Stage Sponsor: Eastman Credit Union.

Program Sponsor: Appalachian Power.

Education Sponsor: East Tennessee State University.

Associate Sponsor: Wilson Worley.

Printing Sponsor: Food City.

Media Sponsors: WJHL News Channel 11; Charter Media; Cumulus Tri-Cities; Daytime Tri-Cities; Kingsport Times-News; Times Digital Group; and VIPSeen Tri-Cities.

Red Carpet Sponsors: Daytime Tri-Cities and VIPSeen Tri-Cities.

Table Sign Sponsor: Express Signs.

Photography Sponsor: Mickey Baker Photography.

Hall of Fame Sponsors: WJHL News Channel 11; Appalachian Community Federal Credit Union; Appalachian Power; Brock; City of Kingsport; CSX Transportation; Cumberland Marketing; Domtar; Eastman; Eastman Credit Union; East Tennessee State University; Food City; Holston Medical Group; Holston Valley Medical Center; Impact Plastics; Indian Path Medical Center; Jacobs; MeadowView Marriott Conference Resort & Convention Center; Pals Sudden Service; Pepsi; and Wilson Worley.

Anniversary Sponsors: AccuForce; GRC Construction/CainRashWest Architects; and Hargrove Engineers & Constructors.

Diamond Sponsors: Asbury Place; Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz; Bank of Tennessee; ETW Insurance; First Tennessee Bank; Hunter, Smith & Davis; KIA of Kingsport; Kingsport 925; Martin Dentistry; Northeast State Community College; Premier Pharmacy; Regional Center for Advanced Manufacturing; Regions Bank; Symphony of the Mountains Orchestra; TEC Industrial; Thompson; Toyota/Lexus of Kingsport; Tri-Cities Center for Cosmetic Dentistry; University of Tennessee; and Workspace Interiors.

Platinum Sponsors: Charter Business; and J.A. Street & Associates.

Gold Sponsors: AT&T; Charter Media; Citizens Bank; Home Instead; Lincoln Memorial University; Marsh Regional Blood Center; Price & Ramey; Republic Services; Rodefer Moss & Company; and St. Dominic Catholic School.

Silver Sponsors: Barge Waggoner Sumner & Cannon; Blackburn, Childers & Steagall; Bristol Motor Speedway; Cherry Bekaert; Dent K. Burk Associates; Emory & Henry College; First Bank & Trust Company; First Kingsport Credit Union; Healthcare Trust of America; HomeTrust Bank; NETWORKS; Oak Hill Funeral & Cremation Services; Tele-Optics; Town & Country Realty; TriSummit Bank; Urology Associates of Kingsport; and Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network.

Bronze Sponsors: Appville 101; Burger King; Burk Consulting; East Coast Wings & Grill; Elite Manufacturing & Professional Services; Express Signs; First Assist Urgent Care/Mountain States Medical Group; Frontier Health; Integrity Capital Management; Longhorn Steakhouse; Kingsport Farmers Market; King University; KOSBE; Mattern & Craig; Milligan College; and Powell Valley National Bank.


The Kingsport Chamber of Commerce is a private, non-profit business organization composed of nearly 1,000 members.‚  The Kingsport Chambers mission is to utilize resources and focus efforts on enhancing a strong and viable business environment for the Kingsport area.

Programs of the Kingsport Chamber of Commerce include:‚  Communications & Development; Education & Workforce Development; Downtown Concert Series; Fun Fest; Government Relations; Keep Kingsport Beautiful; Kingsport ChamberZone; Kingsport Convention & Visitors Bureau (KCVB); Kingsport Leadership Programs (ENCORE, Leadership Kingsport and S.H.O.U.T.!‚®); Kingsport Office of Small Business Development & Entrepreneurship (KOSBE); Membership; Move to Kingsport; Santa Train; and Tennessee/Virginia Scholars.

For more information on the Kingsport Chamber of Commerce, go to or call (423) 392-8800.‚  Were social too; follow us on our Facebook page, Your Kingsport Area Chamber of Commerce, and on our Twitter account, @kptchamber.