Joey Bryan is a native of Franklin, Tennessee and spent his adolescence visiting No. 576 in Centennial Park. Bryan is a preservationist, historian, and writer with a passion for saving America’s industrial heritage. He received a B.A. in History from the University of Alabama in 2012 and a M.A. in Public History from Middle Tennessee State University in 2015. While at MTSU, he worked as a research assistant at the Center for Historic Preservation.
In the summer of 2013, Bryan interned at the Virginia Museum of Transportation during the kickoff of the “Fire Up 611!” fundraising campaign. He worked for the museum the following year as Assistant Communications Manager assisting with social media, marketing, and media relations during Norfolk & Western 611’s first excursion season. Because of his involvement with the 611 restoration effort, Bryan wrote his master’s thesis on the economic and interpretive benefits of collaborative partnerships between railroads and non-profit organizations for the operation of steam-powered excursions.
Bryan’s ties to Nashville railroading date back to his great-grandfather who worked for the Nashville, Chattanooga, and St. Louis Railway as a clerk in the general office building on Broadway.
Terry Coats, is the past president of the NC&St.L Railway Preservation Society, he is an author and lecturer.
Terry was born in McKenzie, TN. a short distance from the tracks of the NC&St.L Ry. In his formative years, he lived a short distance from the NC&St.L depot in Dresden, Tennessee. He spent hour upon hour in the company of the station agent there and developed a great love of the railroad and its lore. Though he never worked for any railroad, he has had a life long love of railroading and especially the NC&St.L
Terry is 30-year veteran of the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department and a 1973 graduate of Middle Tennessee State University.
In 2010, after five and one-half years of research and writing, Terry published, “Next Stop on Grandpa’s Road, History and Architecture of Nashville Chattanooga and St Louis Railway Depots and Terminals”.
Kelly Lynch is a filmmaker and creative contractor with an extensive background in railroad preservation, operations, and marketing. He has served in a variety of capacities for short line, regional and Class 1 railroads including the Ohio Central, RJ Corman, and Norfolk Southern. Trained in film production at Columbia College Chicago and the New York Film Academy, Lynch has been the owner of digital marketing firm Lynchpin Creative in Northeast Indiana since 2008 and serves as railroad transportation coordinator for Film Indiana. Previously, Lynch has worked for Apple and NBC/Universal in development and production roles.
He is best known in the railroad preservation community for his marketing and development work with the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society, Inc and has participated in numerous rail and steam locomotive preservation projects throughout the country. Lynch has received numerous community accolades and awards in his hometown of Fort Wayne, Indiana, and serves as project manager for a railyard park redevelopment project along the city’s riverfront.
A fireman on restored steam locomotive Nickel Plate Road no. 765, Lynch was recognized as one of the “Under 35 Leaders in Railroad Preservation” by TRAINS Magazine in 2006. Lynch is also a qualified conductor and locomotive fireman.
Davidson Ward is a railroad consultant, preservationist, author, and photographer. Originally from Milwaukee, Ward is a graduate of the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities where, while in school, he became an active volunteer with the Friends of the 261.
Following graduation in 2010, Ward joined the railroad consulting firm R.L. Banks & Associates, Inc., with which he has developed expertise in railroad infrastructure and equipment appraisals, business plan development, transaction support, and strategic planning.
In 2011 Ward worked with preservationists and practitioners to found the 501c(3) not-for-profit Coalition for Sustainable Rail, where he serves as President. Working with the University of Minnesota, CSR is dedicated to: 1) Innovation – supporting and advancing sustainable modern steam, fuel, energy and transportation technologies; 2) Preservation – promoting the safe and efficient operation and preservation of historic rail equipment; and 3) Education – conducting informational activities to increase awareness of those technologies.
In addition to designing the logos and graphic standards of NSPS, Ward has been involved in negotiations with Metro Parks regarding 576, has served as a strategic advisor to matters ranging from fundraising strategy to facilities designs, and is involved in many of the strategic planning matters undertaken by NSPS.
Justin Strickland was born in Charleston, South Carolina where his family cultivated what has become a life-long passion for all things railroading. At the age of 12, his father was transferred to Georgia where Justin graduated in 2001, a stone throw away from the former NC&StL mainline in Acworth. At the age of 15, Justin was introduced to his first railroad related position as a Commissary Attendant and later Car Host aboard the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway. He later affiliated himself as an employee, volunteer or contractor for several noteworthy entities, including the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, Hiawassee River Rail Adventure, Southeastern Railway Museum, Six Flags Over Georgia Railroad, Delta Queen Steamboat, along with others.
In 2006, Chattanooga became his adopted home as he took a position at the Chattanooga Choo Choo Hotel & Vacation Complex as the Resident Historian. During his tenure, he assisted with the 2007 National Railway Historical Society Convention and furthered his for his book entitled ‘Chattanooga’s Terminal Station’. In 2009, the book debuted as the only publication dedicated to the world-famous depot. One of his greatest passions is the history and culture behind our nation’s passenger rail system. Justin continues to reside in North Chattanooga, where he is the Director of Sales for Marriott on the Chattanooga.