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The Full Story

About Us

A.W.A.K.E. Nashville (Advocating for Wellness, Accessibility, and Knowledge of injustice facing the Elderly) is a non-profit organization that advocates for senior members of the community who have limited resources and cannot advocate for themselves. It is our goal to build a bridge of opportunity for the very people who thought they had been forgotten.

The organization was formed by Karen Holder and Danielle Cotton after spearheading the recent relocation efforts of the displaced seniors from the North Park Village Senior Community in Madison, TN. The mother-daughter duo saw a need and wanted to launch an organization to address the growing housing gap for senior residents of Nashville. 

The overarching purpose of AWAKE Nashville is to be the change agent in transforming the lives of seniors into a place of wholeness. We are dedicated to assessing each person’s individual needs in an effort to improve their ability to function as productive, contributing members of their community.

Meet the Team


Karen Holder

Founder & CEO

Karen Holder, Founder & CEO of AWAKE Nashville, is a champion for marginalized communities, dedicating her career to helping others. With a passion for making a difference in peoples lives, she has worked tirelessly to create positive change in her community.


Holder has extensive experience in counseling and ministry, having obtained a master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling and a license in ministry in 1994. She has also served as a rehabilitation intake counselor at Davidson County Drug Court and Program Coordinator for Mending Hearts.

Throughout her career, Holder has demonstrated a deep commitment to serving the disenfranchised. Her passion for serving others led her to create AWAKE Nashville. She is a true visionary with a heart for the community, and her dedication to improving the lives of those around her is an inspiration to many.


Danielle Cotton


Danielle Cotton, Co-founder of AWAKE Nashville, is a native Nashvillian with a sincere passion for community, family, and social justice. Cotton has over eight years of professional experience in publicity, marketing, brand consultation, press relations, social media, brand design, email marketing, event planning, and more. As honors graduate from Lipscomb University with a B.A. degree in Journalism and New Media, Cotton began her career in public relations in 2015, specializing in the domestic and International entertainment arena. During her years of experience as a public relations professional, Cotton has led countless successful marketing campaigns for prominent television and entertainment companies, drama festivals, non-profits, and city leaders. In addition, Cotton has a sincere commitment to serving the community. As a seasoned, accomplished, and motivated strategic thinker, Cotton has leveraged the expertise of community partners, social activists, government officials, and nonprofits to create a long-term community plan around housing disparities for seniors. Through this initiative, she has garnered the attention of political leaders and had the opportunity to engage the city to evaluate policy changes and new funding opportunities to help protect the health and wellness of our most vulnerable citizens.


When Cotton is not working, she enjoys spending hours in home décor stores, spending time with her husband and family, making crafts with her beautiful five-year-old daughter, Aubrey, and being a dog mom to her twelve-year-old toy poodle, Bella.

Board of Directors

Dedication. Expertise. Passion.

Core Values & Beliefs

AWAKE Nashville is committed to operating in integrity, and upholding the highest ethical standards in all that we do. We believe our core values will help us fulfill our mission and vision to those we serve, and provide accountability, transparency, and trust with our donors, grantors, partners, and the community.


Core Values that guide the leadership of AWAKE Nashville:

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