Joe Emert

Past President

Joe Emert is a 7th generation East Tennessean whose family settled Emert's Cove (now Pittman Center) in the 1790s and his 3rd great grandfather moved to Tuckaleechee Cove (now Townsend) in 1826.  He grew up in Maryville, TN and his family genealogy includes the Reagan, Dunn, and Ghormley families, all early settlers of East Tennessee.  He was raised on family stories of the area while spending time in Townsend and the GSMNP, especially in the Tremont and Cades Cove areas. He and Cindy, his wife of 41 years, were early supporters of the Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center, the Appalachian Bear Rescue and Co-Chaired the group that organized the Sam Houston Statue in Maryville, dedicated in 2015. He serves on The East Tennessee Historical Society Board of Directors and the Board of Directors for the Great Smoky Mountain Institute at Tremont.

Joe is a 1978 graduate of The University of Tennessee-Knoxville and served on The Board of Advisors for the College of Nursing.  He is also a graduate of Experience Your Smokies and of the Master Local Historian classes.

A former Chancellor’s Associate for University of Tennessee-Knoxville, he has been awarded the Distinguished Alumni of the College of Nursing and an Accomplished Alumni of The University of Tennessee. Upon his retirement from the medical device industry, he was awarded the Medtronic Life Time Achievement Award for his 28-year career.  He is a member of the First Families of Tennessee and the Sons of the Republic of Texas.  Joe and Cindy are the parents of 2 grown sons, Jason (Lauren) and Josh, and currently reside in Walland, TN.