Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Tansi Smoke Signals

March 26, 2014

Lake Tansi welcomes new recreation director

CROSSVILLE — A lot of people have visited Cumberland County, liked what they saw and eventually bought a house. Can Betty Gates be included in that group? Well, yes and no.  She came to Cumberland County to visit her brother who had retired from the United States Air Force. He took her on a tour of the area, including a drive through Tansi on Dunbar Rd. One of his neighbors, a real estate agent, also took her on a tour where he showed her a number of houses, one of which she bought. It was just two days after she arrived at her brother’s house. Here’s how she described the moment: “I have landed on my mountain.”  That was near the end of 2008.

Gates was born in Jackson, Ms., the youngest of six children. Her dad was employed by Phillips Petroleum and was transferred to Lafayette, La. It was there that she graduated from high school. She enjoyed singing and participating in plays. Lafayette is in the heart of Cajun country, and she became interested in Cajun culture. Gates graduated from the University of Southwest Louisiana, now listed as the University of Louisiana. Her field was interior design.

Later, she moved into commercial design. After a construction company completed the exterior of a building, she custom designed the interior. When a shake-up occurred in the oil industry, she moved to Biloxi, on the Mississippi Gulf coast, and worked in real estate and design.

Gates loved being around water and the pleasant, peaceful environment. However, that all changed in 2005 when hurricane Katrina hit. It is one of the five deadliest hurricanes in U.S. history. “Our house took a hit,” she remembers.

After the storm, she worked with the mayor’s office helping coordinate cleanup. Betty was active in the city and served as president of the Chamber of Commerce. Her two sons and two grandsons still reside in Biloxi.

Recently, I had the privilege of sitting down with Gates. I learned that she and her sons had been to Tennessee several years ago on a trip to the Great Smoky Mountains and the Cherokee Indian Reservation. I asked what impressed her most about this area in general. “The beauty – it’s so clean. I can see the sky at night and the stars. It’s quiet and peaceful.”  My next question was how she pictured these areas: Cumberland County – “Peaceful.”  Crossville – “A small town feeling with a warm atmosphere.”  Lake Tansi Village – “A hidden gem. Extremely friendly – a good mix – a ‘laid back’ casual atmosphere.”

It was obvious to me that Gates is like so many of us who have taken up residence in Tansi – she has fallen in love with our village. She is anxious to begin her new job. She wants to meet as many residents as quickly as possible. As to the type of management style we can expect, she replied: “Hands-on with an emphasis on consistency and fairness.” She is a goal setter. “Action is universal for success,” she said. “I want to get people involved and keep them involved. Her credo is “Breathe life into your dreams. Success is achieved when people work together to achieve unity of community. Every day is a gift – we need to make the most of it. I am not afraid to try new and different ways to do things. I am not afraid to admit if and when I make a mistake.”

Gates feels she made the right decision moving to Cumberland County and now into the Tansi Recreation Director’s job. She is comfortable with where she is. The mayor of Biloxi would like for her to come back and get involved again. But she is happy on “her mountain.” She wants to become more involved and get others involved, too.

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Tansi Smoke Signals
  • humvee 2a.JPG Tansi Security Police attains new equipment and new officer

    The Lake Tansi Security Police has acquired a trainee, new vehicle from the 1033 Program and body armor due to the generosity of the Rotary Club and VEC.

    June 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rec direc.JPG Tansi welcomes Medley as recreation director

    Lake Tansi has experienced a whirlwind of ups and downs in regards to retaining a recreations director. When Ken Soncrant resigned, POA Director Gary Dillon hired Betty Gates who had worked in recreations management at Fairfield Glade.

    June 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Epic Independence Day celebration set at Lake Tansi

    The Lake Tansi Recreations Department has planned an epic Independence Day celebration that will brighten the stars on your flags. The celebration will start Friday, July 4th and continue through the weekend with family friendly activities and entertainment that is inspired by classic Americana fun.

    June 25, 2014

  • toodle 2.JPG Tansi bids a bittersweet farewell to Brenda Toodle

    Brenda Toodle has made quite an impact on Lake Tansi in her nearly two decades of being a resident. Before her move back to Michigan, her many friends held a farewell reception on May 28 at the Thunderbird to send their best wishes with her.

    June 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tansi launches Operation Safe Community

    You may have heard that a neighborhood watch group is being established again in Tansi. After a recent break-in in our neighborhood, my wife, Paula, talked with Lt. Gary Howard of the Sheriff’s Department to see what we, as a neighborhood, could do to minimize crime in Tansi.

    June 25, 2014

  • Lake Tansi Golf Club honored for support of veterans

    Naval Master Chief Dennis Sassenger II, stationed in Hawaii, visited his father, our own Dennis Sassenger, in Lake Tansi. He was so impressed with the way he was treated as a guest and veteran at the golf course that he returned home and started the process of thanking us for the welcome and support he received.

    June 25, 2014

  • Lake Tansi celebrates Memorial Day in a big way

    Memorial Day is a time to reflect upon those of our fallen troops who gave their lives to preserve America’s values and freedoms. To those soldiers and their families we give our greatest admirations and deepest appreciation. Knowing what Memorial Day is about gives reason to pause, to pray and to share in those hard won freedoms with family and friends.

    June 25, 2014

  • Swim 1.JPG Never too soon to start water safety lessons

    Lake Tansi would like to encourage everyone who enjoys the water to play safely. Lake Tansi has such wonderful amenities, including the lake and pools, but playing it safe is better than not playing at all.

    June 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pan 1.JPG On the Hook with the Pan Fish Club

    Hook, line and sinker, the Lake Tansi Pan Fish Anglers Club has enjoyed the first half of its fishing season.

    June 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • The Mike Steinmann/Salvation Army Golf Tournament set for July 26

    The seventh annual Mike Steinmann/Salvation Army Golf Tournament is set for this year on Saturday, July 26 at the Lake Tansi Golf Course.

    June 25, 2014

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