Fisher becomes executive director of open government group

From Tennessee Coalition for Open Government: NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Coalition for Open Government has named Deborah Fisher as its new executive director.

The Tennessee Coalition for Open Government is a nonprofit, nonpartisan research and educational organization begun 10 years ago to preserve, protect and improve citizen access to public information and open government in Tennessee.

The coalition serves as an information clearinghouse and resource on problems and solutions related to public records and open meetings at the state and local level. Coalition members include media, professional groups and individual citizens interested in transparency in government.

The coalition has assisted hundreds of citizens and journalists regarding open government issues, as well as led educational campaigns and research activities regarding open government. It led the effort to develop the Office of Open Records Counsel within the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury in 2008 so that citizens could get guidance from the state in obtaining public records from local government. The office also provides guidance to local public officials on open records law.

TCOG tracks threats to open government, including monitoring proposed legislation and legal developments, sharing them with the public as part of its mission with an understanding that the best way to preserve and improve access to public business is through research and education. It is a member of a national network of freedom of information organizations in each state.

Fisher has worked as a journalist for 25 years. Most recently, she was senior editor for news at The Tennessean in Nashville where she worked for a decade leading news, business and investigative reporters. She is past president of the Middle Tennessee Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and currently serves on its board.

Fisher also worked for several years in Texas as a reporter and editor. She was editor and vice president of the Corpus Christi (Texas) Caller-Times, where she also held roles as managing editor and business editor. She worked as a reporter at the Beaumont (Texas) Enterprise and the Tyler (Texas) Morning Telegraph.

Fisher is a graduate of Baylor University and a native of Paducah, Kentucky.

Please see here for the complete press release.

The Tennessee Coalition for Open Government is a member of NFOIC. –eds