BrightStone, Inc.
Share page
3000 BrightStone Parkway
Franklin, TN 37064
Organization Details



BrightStone provides comprehensive work, social support, and future residential community for adults with intellectual disabilities expanding their potential and helping them develop mentally, physically, socially, emotionally and spiritually.


BrightStone began as an educator and parent-led effort to provide continuing learning and job opportunities beyond high school for adults exiting special education programs in middle Tennessee schools. A survey conducted in 1998 determined that over 70% of graduates who had completed a job training transition program and exited high school were back home, unemployed, and with no prospects of a job nor further skill training. Continuing education, job training, and residential opportunities were very limited in middle Tennessee. To meet this very urgent need, BrightStone began in 1999 with just 4 students and a volunteer staff with a commitment to provide job training and continued learning opportunities in a professional, safe, and loving environment. In 2007, a new 9,000 square foot facility was built to allow BrightStone to increase the number of families served. Job training programs and services were expanded including transportation services, more community activities, and health and wellness education with a full-time RN. Today, 41 students are enrolled at BrightStone where they are offered classes in job skills, productive work habits, functional academics, health & wellness, physical exercise, computer skills, leisure activities, community awareness, music, art and social and life skills training. BrightStone's enrollment requests continues to grow with the growth of the community. BrightStone's vision and goal is to provide quality opportunities for these very capable adults allowing them to expand their potential for greater independence. BrightStone's focus continues to be job training so adults can develop productive work habits. Our state of the art Computer Learning Lab allows students to access cutting edge academic and educational resources. BrightStone students enjoy a variety of continuing education classes cover topics including functional academics, computer skills, cooking and nutrition, social awareness, music, art, crafts, physical wellness, and personal advocacy. BrightStone recently embarked on a new strategic phase for the organization which will expand its day program enrollment and add residential housing options on a recently acquired 140 acre campus located minutes from downtown Franklin, TN.


Here are some of our recent accomplishments:

1. General contributions continue to grow and 2023 was a record year-thanks to our supporters!
2. We completed our $20.5M capital campaign in 2023.
3. BrightStone increased our number of families served by 25%.
4. We successfully transitioned from being led by our Founder and Executive Director to our first CEO.
5. We hired 5 new teachers.


BrightStone has the following needs:(1) Volunteers Needed! For current BrightCorps volunteer opportunities, please contact Elaine Farmer at 615-790-4888 or

Donations Needed! BrightStone receives no government funding and depends on community support to cover costs not funded by tuition. Your financial support to our Scholarship Fund makes it possible for a parent to afford the cost of tuition.

Other ways to support BrightStone* Buy BrightStone ProductsCeramics, greeting cards, and 12 delicious packaged food mixes (fudge, blondies, cookies, dips and teas) are made by BrightStone students in our job training program. All payment forms accepted. Purchase at 3000 BrightStone Parkway, Franklin, TN.

* Planned Gifts Add BrightStone to your will or listing BrightStone as a beneficiary on your retirement account or life insurance policy.

CEO Statement

Everyone needs a reason to get up in the morning and something of value to do! We all value ourselves by the accomplishments that we make each day, and so do our BrightStone adult students. Individuals with intellectual and developmental challenges not only can work, they greatly enjoy working. BrightStone provides options, support, and opportunities so these adults can live a valued life at their highest potential with respect and dignity in a caring and loving environment. Our ultimate goal is to provide whole life programming, assistance, and learning for our adults 24/7 including a program of vocational training and job opportunities, social and community activities, life and functional learning, a full program of individualized therapeutic opportunities, and much-needed supervised residential options. We recently purchased property in Franklin and look forward to building a new campus to accomplish this goal! To live as they want, where they want, with whom they want while participating in activities and jobs they like is a lofty and determined goal of our staff, our families, and our adults themselves! This new and innovative campus will be the means toward this goal. Job skills in such areas as horticulture, crafts, hospitality will be taught in a facility built to meet their individual learning styles as well as their physical and health requirements. Our new campus will also host an equestrian center for therapeutic horseback riding and animal care. Other therapies will be provided in this state-of-the-art facility, such as aquatic therapy, physical therapy, language therapy, and behavioral therapy along with augmented communication methods. This is a huge vision and will take a huge community of caring people to make it happen! We are very excited about the future of BrightStone and the quality of life it affords these very deserving and hard working citizens who want to contribute - they just need the chance! Many donors have helped BrightStone reach its current successful status. We are very grateful to this giving community made up of so many, many people who care, and we look forward to a future of partnering together to provide a place of hope, a program of work and dignity, and a culture of positive success!

Board Chair Statement

From Mike Cairnes, Chairman: By way of introduction, I'm first and foremost the father of an adult with special needs, husband to an amazing wife of 31 years, and dad to three other wonderful
children. I fully understand the joys and stresses of families who have children with special needs. And as an executive, I've led teams that built businesses. I understand what it takes to build our Land of Dreams campus, which is near and dear to my heart. I've been truly honored and humbled to become BrightStone's Board Chairman.

My First Year Observations Highlight Multifaceted Strengths
1. Strong Organization: Our leadership team and staff are intensely passionate,
caring, and committed.
2. Strong Board: Our Board includes the brightest C-suite business leaders,
physicians, accountants, and lawyers who support BrightStone's vision.3. Strong DNA: BrightStone's God-centered Mission and Values is core to every
decision we make.
4. Strong Financial Underpinning: BrightStone is guided by a conservative and
meticulous financial and budgeting process.
5. Strong Community Support: The backbone of this organization is jaw dropping
community support and wonderful volunteers.
6. Strong Vision: BrightStone's 140-acre Land of Dreams campus will be the first
of its kind in TN and is destined to become a model facility in the nation.

Our Land of Dreams campus will be a source of pride for our community, offering
hope for families while providing adults with special needs a lifetime of care and
support. We would love to show you the work God is doing at BrightStone and
hope you will contact us to schedule a tour.

Service Categories

Primary Category: Human Services  - Developmentally Disabled Services/Centers 
Secondary Category: -
Tertiary Category: -

Areas Served

We are located in Middle Tennessee in the historic town of Franklin, in Williamson County. We welcome and serve adults from many surrounding counties. This serene country environment provides an excellent setting for our adults who enjoy living in peaceful and calm surroundings. We are, however, close to the busy city life of Nashville giving our adults many opportunities for work, social support, and an active life!

TN - Maury
TN - Williamson
TN - Hickman
TN - Davidson