Dave Ward | President & CEO

Dave Ward joined Tommy Nobis Center in October 2015 as President & CEO. Dave is a servant leader with more than 29 years of experience in the nonprofit field. He has a proven history of programmatic and organizational success with a strong focus on building new programs from the ground up, and he is passionate about changing lives and advancing the mission of Tommy Nobis Center.

Prior to joining Tommy Nobis Center, Dave served as Executive Vice President of Mental Health and Family Services for the Wounded Warrior Project after serving as Warriors To Work Director and Economic Empowerment Executive Vice President. In addition, Dave has held roles as Executive Director of Big Brothers Big Sisters, Regional Director of the Make-A-Wish Foundation and Regional Vice President of Best Buddies International. Dave spent six years with the Wood County Board of Developmental Disabilities in Ohio and was once a licensed psychotherapist providing home-based counseling to at-risk youth. 

In addition to being selected as a member of Leadership Atlanta’s Class of 2020, Dave also serves as a Governor-appointed member of the Georgia Employment First Council. He sits on the board for the Georgia Association of Training, Employment and Supports (GATES) and will serve as its president from 2019-2021. He was also a nominee for the Turknett Leadership Group’s 2018 Leadership Character Award.

Dave’s educational background includes a bachelor’s degree in sociology and criminal justice from Bluffton College and a master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling from Bowling Green State University.

A native of Bowling Green, Ohio, Dave now resides in Acworth with his wife, Priscilla, their son Cohen, their daughter Callie and their Saint Bernard, Mitchell. During football season, Dave can be found passionately cheering for the Pittsburgh Steelers.


Lisa Hughes joined Tommy Nobis Center in 2014. As Chief Operating Officer, she leads the Rehabilitation Department, Production & Fulfillment Department, Human Resources and Nobis Enterprises, our government contracting team. Lisa promotes alignment around Tommy Nobis Center’s organizational strategy, programs and business operations. She is a key player in the areas of information technology, organizational safety & health and our facilities.

Lisa received her Bachelor of Science in Management from The Georgia Institute of Technology with certificates in Industrial/Organizational Psychology and Economics. She received her Master of Science in Personnel and Employment Relations from Georgia State University, obtained her Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) designation in 2003, Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR) in 2005 and SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) designation in 2015. Through Georgia Center for Nonprofits, she was awarded a Certificate of Nonprofit Organization Management in 2015.

Lisa is an Instructor in the College of Professional & Continuing Education at Kennesaw State University and served as the 2016-2017 President for the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) – Atlanta chapter.

An Atlanta native, Lisa lives in Canton with her husband Edwin, their black lab, Louie, and 2 horses. Together, Lisa and Edwin enjoy live music and attending auto races.

Carolyn Proffitt | Vice President – Development

Carolyn Proffitt joined Tommy Nobis Center as Vice President of Development in May 2018. She has served in the nonprofit sector in Atlanta for 28 years, specifically in the area of development, primarily focusing on human services.

Prior to joining Tommy Nobis Center, Carolyn served as Director of Development for ToolBank USA. Her past positions include Director of Development for the Atlanta Press Club, Senior Director of Development for Golden Key International Honour Society, Area Director of Coweta and Fayette Counties for United Way of Greater Atlanta, President of Philanthropic Solutions, Chief Development Officer for the Brain Injury Association of Georgia and Senior Campaign Manager of the Girl Scout Council of Greater Atlanta.

A Certified Fundraising Executive since 1996, Carolyn has served on several nonprofit boards and has served in various capacities on the board of directors for the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Greater Atlanta Chapter. Carolyn has also served as chair for the Committee on Philanthropy for the Office of the Governor of Georgia and has studied at the Nonprofit Management Institute at Harvard University. In addition to being a member of the Leadership Atlanta Class of 2011, Carolyn has served as a recurring speaker for the Association of Fundraising Professionals International Conferences. Carolyn received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Georgia.

A native of Atlanta, Carolyn resides on the southside with her husband and three children, Brandon, Kendall and Blake. Outside of work, Carolyn is a passionate autism mother and advocate for her youngest son Blake. She and her husband are avid Georgia Bulldog fans and enthusiastic supporters of their children’s high school and college endeavors.


Tammy Shearer provides experienced CFO leadership to Tommy Nobis Center. Tammy has more than 20 years of accounting experience with both multi-million dollar clients and small non-profits, domestically and internationally. As the owner of Cyber Financial Solutions, Tammy manages entire accounting departments, trains accounting personnel, and installs specialized software packages.

Tammy graduated with her bachelor’s degree in accounting from Kansas State University and has also worked in real estate and hotel management accounting. She resides in John’s Creek, is a member of AICPA, and she volunteers with nonprofits in her free time.

Board of Directors

Tommy Nobis Center consists of two 501 (c)(3) organizations, each governed by a volunteer board of directors. Below you’ll find a listing of the members of the board of directors for Nobis Works, Inc. and Nobis Enterprises, Inc.


Nobis Works Board of Directors

Hon. Rob Leonard
Board Chairman
Superior Court Judge, Cobb County

Rob Leonard is a Superior Court Judge for Cobb County. He has served on the Tommy Nobis Center Board since 2006 and has held various officer positions. Rob resides in Cobb County.

Nobis Works Board of DirectorsBen Miller
Board Vice Chairman 

Partner, Bennett Thrasher

Ben Miller is a Partner at Bennett Thrasher. He has served on the Tommy Nobis Center Board since 2011 and has held various officer positions. Ben and his family reside in Atlanta.

Nobis Works Board Members

Preston Hobson,

Sales Manager, WSB-TV

Preston Hobson is a Sales Manager at WSB-TV. He has served on the Tommy Nobis Center Board since 2013 and serves on the Galaxy of Stars Committee. Preston and his family reside in Marietta.

Lance Cornell

President, Cornerstone Financial Consulting

Lance Cornell is President of Cornerstone Financial Consulting. He has served on the Tommy Nobis Center Board since 2011 and has held various officer positions. He is also Chairman of the Finance and Audit Committee. Lance and his family reside in Marietta.


Nobis Works Board Officers
Alan Moak
Retired Business Owner/Corporate Executive

Nobis Works Board of Directors
Rob Swartwood
James Bates Brannan Groover LLP

Jim Budzinski
Executive VP & Chief Financial Officer

Terry Mathews
Mathews & Maxwell

Nobis Works Board Members
Tony Hagler
Human Resources Director
Cobb County Government

Nobis Works Board Members
Bobbie Knopf
President and CEO
Northside Enterprises

Nobis Works Board Members
Dick Lewis

Nobis Works Board Members
Stewart Manley

Sherry Nielsen
Corporate Counsel

Lynn Nobis
Community Advocate

Bill Steinhaus
Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak, & Stewart, PC

Nobis Works Board Members
Chris Wasserman
Market Manager
Vitamin T


Johnny Isakson
United States Senator

Karen Slaughter