Today’s issue of The Tennessean featured an article by opinion columnist LeBron Hill noting that voters under 35 made up only 9% of early voting for the most recent Nashville mayoral election. To find out what may be keeping more millennials ages 23-38 from voting locally, Hill talked with Charlane Oliver (Class 59), founder of  The Equity Alliance, a Nashville-based grassroots non-profit advocacy group that seeks to equip citizens with tools and strategies to engage in the civic process. Oliver thinks the city is lacking in voter education and advertisement where millennials are on social media. For ones who are aware, they find it unappealing and aggressive and therefore, may feel incompetent where there are already so many loud voices. Hill reminds young professionals that “voting is much more than just a civic duty. It is taking ownership of your community. Looking ahead in years to come, issues such as education and housing will be in our hands to handle.” The runoff election for Mayor, four Metropolitan Council At Large and eight District seats in Davidson County is on September 12, with early voting August 23-September 7. Hill encourages millennials that “The only way we can ensure a sustainable and prosperous future is to vote.”

Charlane Oliver (Class 59)