Crissy Haslam was born in Houston, Texas, and moved with her family as a young child to Memphis, Tennessee. She graduated with a double major in finance and marketing from Emory University’s College of Business in 1980 and served as the vice president of the Business School Council.
After she and her husband, Governor Bill Haslam, were married and moved to Knoxville, Tennessee, in 1981, Mrs. Haslam worked as the assistant director of admissions for the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. She received her master’s degree in education (college student personnel) from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville in 1985, where she also worked as an advisor in the College of Liberal Arts.
As first lady of Tennessee, Mrs. Haslam introduced a three-part initiative that focuses on the interplay between family engagement and literacy improvement in Tennessee. She travels the state to stress the importance of parents as first teachers, parents as education partners and also to raise awareness for the exponential value of reading at grade level by the third grade.
The Haslams have three grown children, Will, Annie and Leigh, and one grandchild, Wyatt. Mrs. Haslam has served on numerous civic and community boards and has volunteered extensively at the Love Kitchen, a provider of meals for Knoxville’s poor and home-bound population. She currently serves as chair of the Tennessee Executive Residence Foundation.