March 02, 2018

RICHMOND HILL, GA – March 2, 2018 – The Bryan County Bark Park unveils a new era for this local nonprofit organization with the appointment of a new President, Secretary, and Board Directors.

Renee Laurie takes the role of President, with Wendy Bolton stepping down to become Past President. Renee Spurlin Kornegay, who recently joined the board, will replace Amy Nolan as Secretary. Shannon Arnold has joined the board as its newest Director. Lesley Francis will continue to serve as Vice President, along with Laura McGee acting as Treasurer. These individuals are joined by existing Board Directors Kyle Christianson and Greg Elmgren.

“We are incredibly grateful to both Amy Nolan, who is relocating, and Wendy Bolton for the time and work they have put in to helping make the Bark Park what it is today,” said President Renee Laurie. “Wendy has served on our board since the beginning and we would not be where we are today without her tireless work over the past six years.”

Renee Laurie is currently the Senior Corporate Sales Manager at Savannah Lodging. Her experience in top tier for-profit and nonprofit organizations, businesses and corporations has given her extensive insights into channeling the efforts of volunteers into mission driven community outreach projects that translate into measurable results. Among her many accomplishments, she is most proud of her position as Event Chair for the annual “What If…Festival,” presented by the Kennedy Center’s “Imagination Celebration.” Locally, and close to her heart, has been Laurie’s work with the 200 Club of the Coastal Empire. She has served as chair for the events and fundraising committees for The Savannah Mile from 2007 to 2013, raising $100,000 annually. She also created a format for the annual “Community Hearo’s Golf Tournament” and the Valor Awards. The 200 Club provides immediate financial assistance to families of first responders, who have died in the line of duty. Last November, Laurie spearheaded the Bark Park’s successful inaugural “Pup Pull” fundraiser along with Board Director Kyle Christiansen.

As Vice President of Analytics and Digital Marketing, Renee Spurlin Kornegay leads ARPR’s inbound marketing team. Her award-winning work with this tech public relations agency has exceeded inbound lead targets, doubles website traffic, resulted in media placements in leading outlets like Yahoo!, Time, and CNN, sold out events and exponentially grown social media engagement. Passionate about the intersection of marketing and PR, Spurlin has authored several articles on the topic, appearing in PRDaily, the Atlanta Business Chronicle, Hypepotamus, and most recently, in PR News’ Google for Communicators Guidebook. She has also spoken at numerous national events on integrated marketing, including Silverpop and Bronto’s annual email marketing summits, Geekend, PRSA’s national nonprofit group and more. As past president of the Atlanta chapter of the American Marketing Association, Spurlin directed recruitment, communication, administration and programming for the nonprofit’s 900+ members. She graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in communication and a minor in business and completed her master’s in corporate public relations at Boston University.

Shannon Arnold, Catering Sales Manager at Embassy Suites and Hampton Inn & Suites Historic Savannah, details and facilitates all Corporate and Special Events for this Charleston-based, Hilton-managed company, who also provides four-star dining through his Holy City Hospitality restaurants. With an early love for adventure, fundraising, and community, Arnold found herself studying at Georgia Southern University, focusing on Public Relations and Event Planning. After completing her education at Georgia Southern, Arnold settled down in Ellabell and visited the Bryan County Bark Park for the first time attending Christmas in the Park. She developed a continuing passion for event planning as a Savannah Chamber Ambassador and participating in multiple event planning opportunities with the Tourism Leadership Council. She felt compelled to focus her efforts locally on her new-found home, Bryan County. Her aim was to translate her skills into the Bryan County Bark Park, and community minded projects. Through her volunteer efforts at the First Annual Pup Pull, the Bryan County Bark Park board agreed.

“With the energy and expertise of our new and existing board members, as well as the support of our community, we will continue to go from strength to strength,” said Laurie. “Stay tuned for exciting announcements about park improvements coming soon.”

The Bryan County Bark Park is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides a safe, well-maintained and clean environment for dog owners and their furry friends to play and run free. The park, located at 15849 GA Highway 144 in Richmond Hill, GA is open 24/7 and is free to all members of the public.

To learn more about the Bryan County Bark Park, please visit


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