Gresham, Smith CEO featured at March 12 NBB

By |

    Print this page Email this page

James W. Bearden, CEO of Gresham, Smith and Partners, will be the featured speaker at Lipscomb University’s Nashville Business Breakfast at 7 a.m. on Wednesday, March 12, in Allen Arena.

James BeardenBearden will speak on “The Impact and Responsibility of Design in Enhancing our Communities.” Since 2003, Bearden has served as CEO of Gresham, Smith and Partners, a top 100 design firm as designated by Engineering News-Record. He has been instrumental in the firm’s growth, successfully focusing on continued improvement of core design competencies while diversifying services to meet the changing demands of the market.

Understanding the implications sustainable design has on business, employees, clients and end-users, Bearden has enhanced the company’s commitment to creating design solutions with a holistic approach and balance. He was instrumental in the development of Gresham, Smith’s sustainability policy which seeks to proactively benchmark, evaluate and improve internal operations. The firm has signed on to the American Institute of Architects’ 2030 Commitment and is involved with several organizations with a sustainability focus including the U.S. Green Building Council and the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure.

The cost of the breakfast is $30 in advance and $40 at the door. Registration is available online at or by calling 615.966.6609.

Bearden holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Tennessee. He is a member of the American Institute of Architects, the Nashville Healthcare Council and is a founding board member of the ACE (Architecture, Construction, Engineering) Mentoring Program.

He serves as chairman of the board of directors of St. Thomas Health and is a member of the 2014 United Way Board of Trustees and 2014 American Heart Association executive leadership team. Bearden has been recognized as an outstanding volunteer in the international business category from the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, is a graduate of the 2006 Leadership Nashville class and was named among the Most Admired CEOs by the Nashville Business Journal in 2013.

The Nashville Business Breakfast is a quarterly networking event presented by Lipscomb University and the Nashville Business Journal, with a news-conference style format, featuring business leaders with local economic impact. The event is sponsored by PNC Bank and Crowe Horwath.

Past speakers include Mayor Karl Dean; John R. Ingram, CEO of Ingram Content Group; Butch Spyridon, president of Nashville's Convention and Visitor's Bureau; Michael Wells, CEO of Jackson National Life Insurance; Jim Wright, CEO of Tractor Supply Company; Gov. Bill Haslam; Michael Woodhouse, chairman, president and CEO of Cracker Barrel Old Country Store; Carlos Tavares, chairman, Nissan Motor Company’s Management Committee; Mark Emkes, CEO of Bridgestone Americas; and Kix Brooks, country music artist and former chairman of the Country Music Association.