We are dedicated to investing in the emotional and spiritual lives of girls who come from hard places and encourage them to live to their fullest potential.
G.I.R.L.S. Ranch is committed to providing a non-judgemental, safe, nurturing environment where girls can take part in a new life experiences in order to restructure their sense of self and make positive changes that will last a lifetime.
There is power in the words “me-too!” When someone hears these beautiful words the thoughts surrounding “I’m alone in this” diminishes quickly. Don’t we want to feel that we matter and belong in this world? Therefore, our hope is that every girl that is brave enough to walk through our doors will learn instantly that she is not alone in her hurt, she matters and belongs here, and there are other courageous girls that share similar stories as hers who can relate to her pain by sharing in the power of “me-too!”
"I love G.I.R.L.S. Ranch....it’s like a second home or kind of feels like my first. I feel loved here and have grown to be more open and honest. I have also learned how to be more trusting of people."
"I love G.I.R.L.S. Ranch because when I come to group, I am challenged to think more about my relationship with God. I feel like I have grown more mature in my spiritual life. Since coming to group, I feel like I have gained more wisdom. I have learned how to let more people in my life and not be so quick to shut them out; with the help of the leaders and other girls, I’ve learned how to let more people in my life without shutting them out so quickly."
"I love that I can be myself at G.I.R.L.S. Ranch. My attitude has gotten much better since coming on Thursday nights. I have started opening up and stopped being so mad at everything. I’ve learned the important things in life....like my relationship with God!"
"I love being able to express myself without wondering if people are going to judge me. I love that I can be honest here. Since coming on Thursday nights, I have learned that I’m not the only one who struggles with my self worth. I’ve learned that God loves me for who I am and I should not change who I am for anyone."
"I love the family atmosphere at G.I.R.L.S. Ranch where we can talk, share our feelings and meet new friends. We have fun too. As soon as I came to G.I.R.L.S. Ranch , I found freedom and began to worship God more!"
"I love coming to G.I.R.L.S. Ranch because I can tell ya’ll things that I can’t tell others. I love that there is a focus on God, and I’ve noticed that I pray more and have a better relationship with Him. Coming to group on Thursday nights also helped me control my anger."
"I love having a place to lean on when I need help or see that I do share similar experiences with others. Coming on Thursday nights has helped me learn how to overcome my social anxiety."
"I love the supportive atmosphere of G.I.R.L.S. Ranch. Every time you walk in you feel warmth and love. I have noticed some things in my life that have changed since coming here every week. I have grown closer to God and feel confident in being more open. I have noticed that I have also becoming more accepting of my self. The leaders tell me they have noticed me smiling more."
"I love that I can share whatever I need to talk about at G.I.R.L.S. Ranch and no one judges me. Coming to group has really allowed me to cope with my struggles at home."
Shannon is from Nashville, Tennessee and received her undergraduate from MTSU and graduated from Regent University in Virginia Beach, VA with a Masters of Arts in Counseling. In addition to working with inner-city and troubled youth since the late nineties; her experiences include working as an addictions counselor at Virginia Beach Psychiatric Hospital, Mental Health Liaison for Centerstone in Davidson County high schools and professional school counselor in Rutherford County, TN.
Tim Ritchie is originally from Cleveland, Ohio but moved to the Nashville area in 1977. Tim is passionate about serving on the board of G.I.RL.S. Ranch. He is consistently moved by the stories shared, both the depth of the pain these girls experience and their achievements once they became involved with the G.I.R.L.S. Ranch family. It is inspirational and reflects Gods grace that we all can see.
Cortney is from Smyrna, TN and received her B.A. degree in Public Relations at Union University. Cortney spent two years working overseas working with girls in one of Thailand’s main red light districts. She is passionate about being a voice for the voiceless, pouring into the lives of young girls, and helping them see their true identity in Christ. She enjoys the peace of the early morning hours, spending time with her husband and son, reading, chatting over good coffee, and running with friends.
Leigh Bagwell is originally from Memphis, TN and has resided in Middle TN for the past 20 years. She has served in the public school system for almost 20 years and is currently the Director of School Counseling for the Tennessee Department of Education. Leigh is passionate about serving on the board for G.I.R.L.S. Ranch because she believes children, specifically young women, face more challenges and dangers than ever before.
Chad Love is originally from Hermitage, TN and currently works for US Bank as Assistant Vice President. Chad enjoys working with children and has been a youth baseball coach for many years. He also is a volunteer at Second Harvest and United Way. He supports the mission of G.I.R.L.S. Ranch because he has seen the impact it had had on our community and believes it provides teen girls a safe place to support each other while enriching their lives through God’s Word.
Michelle Shrader is originally from California and has lived in Murfreesboro, TN since 2005. Michelle is active in the community through her on going partnerships with local non-profit groups. Michelle is a phenomenal advocate for the need of G.I.R.L.S. Ranch in our community. She serves as a Mentor for G.I.R.L.S. Ranch and enjoys seeing individuals overcome the adversities that they encounter.
Scott Johnson is originally from Michigan and moved to Tennessee over 10 years ago. He received his BS from Bob Jones University and is happily married to Shannon. He loves being involved in the various maintenance projects at the G.I.R.L.S. Ranch house. He enjoys overseeing and managing all the “to-do” lists to up-keep the house.