NashvilleBusiness.Net 100 Leading African Americans 2018 Recipient: Charlane Oliver

Click Here To Listen Nashville Business 100 Leading African Americans Charlane Oliver

Charlane Oliver has more than 12 years of experience in nonprofit management, civil service, public relations and communications whose expertise has led to a track record of taking organizations and programs from good to great.
Charlane serves as a Community Liaison and Communications Staff for U.S. Congressman Jim Cooper, where she spearheads Project Register, a nonpartisan online voter registration initiative with a growing list of more than 85 participating Middle Tennessee companies.

Prior to this appointment, she served as the Director of Communication for the Williamson County Chamber of Commerce, where she used her public relations expertise to drive key marketing and branding strategies to the largest network of businesses in the fastest-growing county in the state. Key accomplishments included launching Williamson County Mobility Week and publicly announcing the formation of the Williamson Business PAC, a move that garnered significant attention from the media and local community stakeholders.

Charlane is also a freelance writer, graphic designer and public relations strategist for nonprofits, small businesses and political campaigns, whose work has been published in The Tennessean, Tennessee Tribune, Nashville Post, Nashville Business Journal, Williamson Herald, YOUR Williamson, Franklin Home Page, and Trumpet magazine. She is credited for being the PR strategist behind successfully electing newcomer Christiane Buggs to the Metro Nashville School Board for District 5. She has also worked with Scott Tift, candidate for Nashville Chancery Court; Judge Angie Blackshear Dalton, Courtenay Rogers, candidate for Tennessee State Rep, and Kent Roberson, candidate for Maryland’s 25th Legislative District.

From 2011-2015, Charlane served as a marketing coordinator for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Center for Health Policy and the Office of Marketing & Communications at Meharry Medical College, where she was responsible for elevating the Center’s reach, visibility, and professional branding as a newly established academic research center in Nashville. In this role, she was voted “Most Valuable Professional” by her peers in the Division of Student and Faculty Affairs and selected to be on the College’s Website Enhancement Strategy Team (W.E.S.T.).

At the age of 25, Charlane was hired at the Knoxville Leadership Foundation as the Director of Amachi Knoxville, a federally-funded, faith-based mentoring program for youth ages 4-17 whose parents are incarcerated in state or federal prison. On the verge of losing its funding, the program underwent a complete turnaround in success under Charlane’s leadership. She exceeded the annual goals for the first time in program history; organized a series of initiatives for National Mentoring Month, including an annual media campaign aimed at recruiting volunteers and building awareness, resulting in media placements with several television, radio and print media outlets; and was awarded $250,000 in additional federal grant funding due to outstanding performance measures that more than tripled the operating budget.
Other previous employment includes serving as a Program Specialist for CoverKids, Tennessee’s S-CHIP program, a Grant Assistant for the Knoxville Area Urban League, and as an Eligibility Counselor for the Tennessee Department of Human Services.
At the heart of Charlane’s body of work is her passion for social justice and serving her community. She is the Founder and Board President of The Equity Alliance, a nonprofit organization that empowers people of color to engage in the civic process, as well as the Power of 10 PAC, a political action committee dedicated to funding and supporting ethnic minority candidates. She serves on the board of the Metro Nashville Emergency 911 Communications District Board, Purpose Preparatory Academy and the Urban Enterprise Group. She is a tnAchieves mentor and a member of the Public Relations Society of America, Nashville Women of Color in Communications, and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. While living in Knoxville for five years, she served as a Charter Member, Vice President, and Secretary of the Knoxville Area Urban League Young Professionals, where she wrote the winning proposal for Outstanding New Chapter of the Year in 2008 awarded by the National Urban League Young Professionals. She was also a former member of the Junior League of Knoxville and MLK Day Commission.

Charlane is a 2017 Nashville Emerging Leader Awards Finalist and a 2016 Nashville Black 40 Under 40 award recipient. She received a 2017 Communications Excellence Grand Award from the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives for her work on Williamson County Mobility Week. She was selected to the 2014 class of the Nashville Junior Chamber Leadership Institute and is an alumnus of the Nashville Young Leader’s Council (Class 59), an organization committed to training individuals to serve on nonprofit boards of nonprofit organizations. Her commitment to uplifting youth has earned her the 2007 Mentor of the Year Award from Governor Bredesen’s Mentoring Initiative through Youth Villages.

Charlane graduated from Vanderbilt University with a B.S. in human and organizational development and holds a Master of Public Administration from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.

She is a native of Little Rock, Arkansas, but has called Tennessee home for the past 16 years. Charlane currently resides in Goodlettsville with her husband and two children.

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