Molly Bradley Hudgens is a 1998 and 2000 graduate of Western Kentucky University with a bachelor of arts degree in English and Allied Language Arts and a master of arts education degree in counseling. She is currently completing her twenty-first year as an educator in the Cheatham County School System where she serves as a school counselor at Sycamore Middle School in Pleasant View, Tennessee. In addition to her counseling role, Mrs. Hudgens also currently serves on SMS’s Crisis Management and Leadership Teams as well as sponsoring the Jr. Beta Society at her school.
During her tenure in education, Hudgens has served as the president of the Alpha Chi chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma Society International and is an active member of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi. Hudgens was also the writer of an NFL Play 60 Super School Grant for Sycamore Middle School.
After a personal experience in college, her interest in violence prevention and safety sparked a desire to educate others who work with intervening in the lives of potentially violent teenagers. Her in-depth study on school shootings and the teenagers who commit these acts, “Recognizing Red Flags,” has been utilized nationally to train professionals in the fields of education, law enforcement, juvenile probation, and juvenile court. The training focuses on understanding the three types of school shooters and how to use threat assessment tools as an intervention to prevent violent acts in a school and community setting.
Mrs. Hudgens put her training to use on September 28, 2016, when she talked a student with a loaded handgun out of committing a mass shooting at Sycamore Middle School. Hudgens, the 2004-2005 and 2016-2017 Sycamore Middle School and Cheatham County Middle School Teacher of the Year, became a Congressional Medal of Honor Citizens Honor recipient for a Single Act of Heroism from the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation in March of 2017. She is also the 2017 recipient of the Tennessee School Counseling Association’s Phoebe White Award for Excellence in School Counseling and the 2019 Mental Health of the Midsouth’s I.C. Hope Award for bringing mental health awareness to schools.
Hudgens has been the recipient of three state recognitions for heroic actions on September 28, 2016 – a Proclamation from the Tennessee House of Representatives in October of 2016, House Resolution No. 66 from the Tennessee House of Representatives in March of 2017, and Senate Resolution No. 40 from the Tennessee State Senate in April of 2017. Mrs. Hudgens has also been a nominee for the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission as well as the American Hero Channel’s Red Bandanna Hero Award in 2017.
Hudgens is a member of the Professional Educators of Tennessee and the American School Counseling Association. She is also a treasurer and choir member at Friendship Church. Because she is the first Congressional Medal of Honor Citizens Honor Recipient from Tennessee, her story is exhibited in the newly-opened Charles H. Coolidge National Medal of Honor Heritage Center in Chattanooga, Tennessee, where she serves as a member of the Advisory Board. Molly is also a speaker for Safe and Sound Schools through Kirkland Productions.
Mrs. Hudgens is the owner of Molly B. Hudgens Communications and is a national motivational speaker as well as a violence prevention specialist. Hudgens’ book, Saving Sycamore: The School Shooting that Never Happened, published by Dave Burgess Consulting, is set for publication in the fall of 2020. Molly resides in Ashland City, Tennessee, where she lives on her family farm with her husband Jason, and two sons, Bradley and Henry.