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Terrie Cross

Boys & Girls Clubs in Tennessee        2010 Hall of Fame Inductee

Terrie Cross

Boys & Girls Clubs of the Cumberland Plateau • Oneida, Tennessee

     Without Terrie Cross, Scott County would not have a Boys & Girls Club. Ms. Cross was the person who initiated the effort to bring a Boys & Girls Club to Scott County and was involved in the recruitment and management of the club’s capital campaign. Ms. Cross has served on the board since the steering committee was formed.  

     Ms. Cross has held numerous positions formally and informally over the years with our Boys & Girls Club. Currently,  Ms. Cross serves our Marketing and Resource Development Committee and our Hall of Fame Committee, but her work for the club doesn’t end with the specific committee she is serving. Ms. Cross brings an abundance of benefits to the club from her connections with other organizations, and her efforts are a big part of the clubs successes over the past few years. Ms. Cross serves the club as the unofficial historian and is a friend to all children and adults in the county. Ms. Cross looks out for club kids in ways that are indescribable. Ms. Cross finds a story each month where someone at our club has directly benefited from being a member at our club and reports it to the Board, in hopes of keeping our Board members engaged and interested.  Ms. Cross was on the committee and was the person who contacted Tennessee Valley to initiate the effort to bring a Boys & Girls Club to Scott County and  served on the Advisory Board when the club was affiliated with Tennessee Valley. She has continued serving the board since the club became an independent organization. 

     In 1999, Ms. Cross sold her Medical Equipment Company after 30 years in business and was asked to organize the Appalachian Life Quality Initiative (ALQI) for the primary purpose of establishing a dental clinic for the county’s 3,000 children on TennCare without local dental care.  While working on that project, the District  Attorney General came to ALQI with a $50,000 grant for a Child Advocacy Center.  A year later the Advocacy Center was housed in a donated log cabin and caring for the abused children of the county.  Then the Juvenile Judge had an idea for a new drug program to work in the schools and asked Ms. Cross organize it.  Today that program is used in schools all across the nation.  Daycare was needed and Terrie made contact with the Boys & Girls Club of the Tennessee Valley in Knoxville with the plans and within a year the plans had started and today Scott County has the third largest Boys & Girls Club in the nation—and the largest in a rural area.  The 40,000 sq. ft. facility was opened in January 2006.  ALQI organized the Capital Campaign raising $2 million and the City and County Governments picked up the rest of the $3.8 million facility.  Along with those efforts, the Scott County Imagination Library is the ONLY program nationwide to have 100% enrollment.

     The latest program of ALQI is called Operation Sharing Tennessee (OST) organized in September 2008.  Started in a old warehouse, the program has grown  tremendously and in the fiscal year 2008-2009 OST received $8.6   million in free products and then distributed those products free of charge to 176 members located within the Appalachian Region Area of Tennessee and Kentucky.  These products could not be sold, traded, or bartered but had to be given away freely.  Since 1999,  Ms. Cross has led ALQI in creating 17 programs for the youth and needy in Scott County Tennessee.  Her office and some of the programs are partially funded by the Elgin Foundation, however, Ms. Cross writes grants and solicits donations throughout the year, doing whatever is needed to make the programs work.  Her largest grant was $1.5 million and the smallest about $500.  No matter the amount of funding, somehow she makes it all work. 

     Ms. Cross is an unsung Hero and has worked for the children of Scott County for many years.  You will not find a person more genuinely interested in the welfare of children than Terrie Cross. The club operates on a much smaller budget due to her efforts and in kind solicitations on the clubs behalf. Ms. Cross is a hard worker and the  Boys & Girls Club would not exist in Scott County if it were not for her efforts over the years.