Our Team

We are a group of passionate people set on creating a brighter future for every community in America. We believe literacy is the way to achieve that goal. 

Our Staff


Ryan Viner | Executive Director

Since Ryan started as CFL's Executive Director, our number of Fight for Literacy Games has grown from 7 to over 100. From 2015-2018 alone, he sourced funding for more than 75 literacy projects nationwide, impacting over 10,000 children. When he's not working, Ryan spends his time with his wife Madeline and their son Levi. [Twitter @ryanviner]


Chandler Ferguson | Operations Manager

Chandler has coordinated CFL’s single largest Fight for Literacy Games effort to date in 2018-2019 with 35+ games and 60+ NCAA partners. In 2019, Chandler helped create and execute CFL’s first ever Fight for Literacy Week in Memphis, Tennessee. When she is not assigning tasks and keeping CFL afloat, Chandler enjoys spending time with her husband Carew and traveling. [Instagram: @chandlerjferguson]


Christopher Clowers | Program Coordinator

Christopher is a Memphis native and CFL’s newest staffer. During 2018-2019, he supported CFL’s largest investment towards its mission to date of over $500,000. He holds a Masters in Accounting from the Fogelman School of Accountancy at the University of Memphis. If Christopher happens to break from connecting with CFL’s partners, Christopher enjoys spending time with his wife Alison and rock climbing. [Instagram: @christopher_clowers]


Our Board of Directors



John Wilfong | Chairman

UBS, Senior Vice President, Wealth Management

Former University of Memphis basketball player and standout at Briarcrest Christian School, Wilfong is a graduate of The University of Memphis and a recipient of a MBA Degree from The University of Memphis School of Business. John is a lifelong Memphis resident, married to Catherine Wilfong and has three children:  Jonathan, Bennett and Luke. John is involved in philanthropy through multiple avenues including Streets Ministries and Third Millennium Ministries. 


Jonathan Wilfong | Co-Founder

Simmons and Company International, Analyst

Jonathan is a graduate of Southern Methodist University. Jonathan is a co-founder of both Coaching for Literacy and the SMU Coaching for Literacy Collegiate Chapter.


Andrew Renshaw | Co-Founder

University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center

Renshaw is a graduate of Vanderbilt University. He is currently a medical student at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center. Andrew is a co-founder of Coaching for Literacy and a founder of the Vanderbilt Coaching for Literacy Chapter.  


Lamar Stanley

Gen Cap America Inc., Vice President

Stanley is a magna cum laude graduate of The University of the South with a Bachelor of Arts degree and recipient of a MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Lamar spent 8 years in the United States Navy as an Intelligence Officer, most recently serving with Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) in Ft. Bragg, NC. Stanley currently serves in the United States Navy Reserve holding the rank of Lieutenant Commander.


Brian Hayhurst

The Carlyle Group, Managing Director, U.S. Growth and U.S. Equity Opportunity Fund (Retired)

Hayhurst originally hails from Memphis, Tennessee and is an honors graduate of Rhodes College. Brian and his wife Joanie currently reside in Oxford, Mississippi and have two sons. He is currently on the Board of Directors of Archive Systems Inc. and Primatics Financial, Inc. In 2005 Hayhurst was honored with the 2005 Financier of the Year award by The Northern Virginia, Maryland, and Washington DC Technology Councils.


Aaron Hayden

Takeda Pharmaceuticals, District Manager

Aaron is from Detroit, Michigan and currently resides in Memphis, Tennessee with his family. One of his largest contributions to the community is his involvement as a youth football coach. Hayden is a former NFL running back who played for the San Diego Chargers, the Green Bay Packers and the Philadelphia Eagles. He was drafted in the fourth round of the 1995 NFL Draft out of the University of Tennessee. He played 4 years in the NFL, retiring in 1988. Aaron currently works with Takeda Pharmaceuticals in the role of District Manager. 


Dr. Alissa Campbell Shaw

International Paper Foundation, Executive Director

Dr. Campbell Shaw leads International Paper’s global corporate and foundation philanthropic and community engagement efforts by making sustainable investments to protect and improve the lives of IP employees and mobilize IP’s people, products, and resources to address critical community needs. She has held leadership positions in Development at the University of Memphis and National Direct Marketing at ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.


Our Advisory Board



Larry Brown | Basketball Coach (retired)

NCAA Team + Coach Staff Partnerships

Brown is a native of Brooklyn, New York. He is the only coach in basketball history to win both an NCAA national championship and an NBA title. He is a decorated Olympian as both a head coach (Bronze Medalist - 2004) and a player (Gold Medalist - 1964). Coach Brown was inducted in the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002. 


Gary Parrish | ESPN Radio, CBS Sports

Brand Ambassador

Gary Parrish is a senior college basketball columnist for CBSSports.com and college basketball insider for the CBS Sports Network. Parrish is the host of "The Gary Parrish Show" on 92.9 FM ESPN in Memphis, Tennessee. Gary primarily writes about college basketball—a sport for which he's won APSE and USBWA national awards for writing and reporting. 


Bill Courtney CEO, Classic American Hardwoods

Corporate Sponsorship Strategist

Bill is a native Memphian who has served the city as a leader, coach, and philanthropist. Courtney is an Academy Award winner for his documentary "Undefeated" and currently serves as a public speaker at a variety of venues from the Para Olympics in Colorado Springs to Nike, PepsiCo, FedEx, and other nationally recognized companies. Bill recently authored Against the Grain - a New York Times bestseller.


Suzanne Hamm VP of Strategy, Director of Sponsorships, Sullivan Branding

Corporate Sponsorship Strategist

Suzanne has over 20 years experience in brand stewardship, agency management, community relations, implementing high value strategic partnerships, promotions and activating sponsorships, social and experiential platforms.