Venita Garvin

A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Venita holds a Master’s in Liberal Studies from New York University and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology with a concentration in Mental Health from Tennessee State University, Nashville, Tennessee.

Venita’s career in the non-profit arena spans over twenty years in the field of Vocational Rehabilitation and the Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Movement. During the course of her non-profit career she has honed the following competencies: Grant Writing, Resource Development, Management and Leadership, and Strategic Planning. Venita has a proven track record in securing Federal and State funding in excess of twenty million during her career. She also has a track record in her ability to cultivate and secure financial gifts ranging from $1,000 – $25,000. Additionally, Venita has had much success in securing capital improvement grants and funding.

Venita has experienced a lot of “firsts” in her lifetime. She was the first woman of color to hold the position of Director for the battered women’s program of the YWCA in Cincinnati, Ohio and Richmond, Virginia. She was the first woman of color to hold the position of CEO of the Domestic Abuse Shelter, Inc. and the first woman of color to hold the office of President for the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence since the inception of FCADV in 1977. Venita is currently President-Elect of Blue Ridge Institute where she will become the first African-American woman to serve as President since BRI’s inception in 1927.

Venita served as State President of the Florida Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Clubs, Inc. from 2008-2010. During her term, she played an integral role in
assisting with the merger of the National Business and Professional Women’s USA organization and BPW Foundation. During her state presidency of BPW/FL her platform issues were pay equity, health care and domestic violence.

Venita is certified in Cultural Diversity with an emphasis on Women’s Issues. She currently serves as a board member of the Health Council for South Florida, Inc. serving Miami and Monroe County, Florida. She is a board member of the Education Foundation of the Business and Professional Women’s Club of Florida where she serves as Second Vice President and Chair of the Growth and Expansion Committee.

She is a co-author of two books: Becoming Your Own Best Friend and Life is An Attitude, The Power of Positive Living. Venita’s also contributed to two co-authored books; When the Vows Break, How to Handle Divorce and Getting Through the
Hurt Locker Years.

Venita’s professional honors include: Woman of the Year and Employer of the Year, Marathon Business and Professional Women’s Club, Inc., President’s Award, Southernmost Homeless Assistance League, and the National Diversity Council, DiversityFirst Award for her commitment and dedication to promoting diversity and inclusion.

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