Kiwanis Club names Steve Buchanan Outstanding Nashvillian of the Year

Kiwanis Club of Nashville has honored Steve Buchanan as the 2012 Outstanding Nashvillian of the Year for his community contributions. Buchanan is president of the Opry Entertainment Group, a division of Ryman Hospitality Properties, and executive producer for Nashville.

Nothing has helped boost the esteem of Music City quite like the debut season of Nashville. As executive producer, Steve Buchanan birthed the idea of the scripted ABC drama and brought it to life. In 2012, multiple guest speakers for Kiwanis, including Mayor Karl Dean, Nashville CVB CEO Butch Spyridon and chief economic development and marketing officer for the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce Janet Miller, noted how important this prime time series has been to the growing national and international interest in our beloved city.

Buchanan is indeed a champion for Nashville which he demonstrates daily through his leadership as president of the Opry Entertainment Group, his role as executive vice president of Ryman Hospitality Properties, involvement in multiple associations and his newest role as executive producer of Nashville. Throughout his career, he has worked to not only promote music and artists but also help to preserve the city’s roots. Because of his efforts, other Nashville landmarks are thriving today, particularly the Ryman Auditorium, for which Buchanan oversaw complete renovations in 1993-94.

Through Buchanan’s vision and guidance, Nashville is an authentic portrayal of both the city and country music industry, providing a positive glimpse into Music City in more than 60 countries around the world. As a result, the program has generated consistent significant commerce here, including new careers, relocations, positive enthusiasm locally, nationally and internationally, as well as considerable local investment and spending, a tremendous amount of high profile media coverage and new interest from tourists to experience Nashville.

“Steve has worked tirelessly to ensure Nashville and country music are recognized for higher social, business and professional standards,” said George H. Armistead III, one of three original authors of the accolade, Kiwanis board member and co-chair of the Outstanding Nashvillian committee. “He is a Vanderbilt graduate who remained here and has been an integral segment of our entertainment community now for over 30 years. His leadership and accomplishments last year with Nashville are so noteworthy and appreciated.

‘Nashville’ exemplifies his expertise in maintaining and boosting sound public opinion of our city and his perseverance, devotion and focus have already yielded substantial tangible and intangible benefits to the best city in the South. We are forever grateful to him!”

“This honor would not be possible without the involvement of so many creative, hard-working and inspiring people who play critical roles in all that I do,” said Buchanan. “I am fortunate to have the pleasure of working with the Grand Ole Opry, the Ryman, WSM-AM and ABC’s Nashville, which are all properties that define and communicate the unique character and appeal of this city.”

Kiwanis Club of Nashville has presented the Outstanding Nashvillian of the Year Award annually since 1980. Past recipients include Martha Ingram, Jack Massey, Vince Gill, Phil Bredesen, Mike Curb, Darrell Waltrip, Marty Dickens, Karl Dean and Ellen Lehman/Brian Williams, among others. Raul Regalado was honored in 2011.
Founded in 1916, Kiwanis Club of Nashville is comprised of nearly 200 business leaders in all professions, including consulting, health care, law, accounting, banking, real estate and retail. Its club members make an impact on the Nashville community by performing many worthy community service projects to serve children and young adults.

Kiwanis Club of Nashville is a local chapter of Kiwanis International, a global service organization of 500,000+ volunteers in more than 80 countries dedicated to responding to the needs of their communities and pooling their resources to address worldwide issues. The club meets 11:30 Fridays inside the Patron Club at Bridgestone Arena with fellowship, lunch and guest speaker. For reservations, contact Executive Secretary Vic Legerton at 615-391-0123, or e-mail

For more information on the club, visit the website at