Home » GLI names successor to President & CEO Kent Oyler

GLI names successor to President & CEO Kent Oyler

Sarah Davasher-Wisdom

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Greater Louisville Inc., the Metro Chamber of Commerce, announced Monday that Sarah Davasher-Wisdom, GLI chief operating officer and chief of staff, has been nominated by the executive committee to succeed President and CEO Kent Oyler, subject to voting board approval at the Annual Meeting on Jan. 23, 2020.

Davasher-Wisdom joined GLI in 2014 and has progressively increased her level of responsibility. Prior to Joining GLI, she was manager of government relations at the Tennessee Valley Authority, strategic communications officer with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and community development coordinator with the office of U.S. Rep. Ron Lewis.

Davasher-Wisdom holds a bachelor of arts in political science and government and a master of public administration from Western Kentucky University. She is expected to graduate from the U.S. Chamber Foundation’s Institute for Organizational Management in January 2020.

“We are pleased to have a well-qualified and fully prepared internal candidate,” said GLI Board Chair Mike Ash. “The decision we’ve made for her to succeed Kent as president and CEO received the unanimous support of GLI’s executive committee. We are especially proud that Sarah will be the first female president or CEO in the 157-year history of GLI and its predecessor organizations.”

Kent Oyler

“Sarah has proven herself as she has steadily advanced through our organization and she is now well prepared to assume the reins at GLI,” Oyler said. “She brings a passion for our regional business community and strong experience in chamber management and public policy. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my tenure with GLI and the many relationships I’ve built with people who truly care about Greater Louisville. GLI is in excellent condition and it’s now time for me to return my attention to my other ongoing entrepreneurial, business and civic interests.”

“I’m honored, humbled and excited to be chosen as the next president and CEO of GLI,” said Davasher-Wisdom. “I look forward to working with the board, investors and staff as we continue driving progress in our region and delivering positive results for business. I love this community and I believe we have tremendous momentum to make it even better.”

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Oyler joined GLI in 2014 during a challenging period and led the chamber back to a strong position in all aspects of its operations, capped by winning American Chamber of Commerce Executives 2019 large Chamber of The Year — the national championship in the chamber industry.

“I want to sincerely thank Kent for leaving his private sector businesses and stepping up to lead GLI when it needed the entrepreneurial, financial and relationship skills he brought to the table, and then twice agreeing to extend his contract,” said incoming GLI board chair Lonnie Bellar.

Davasher-Wisdom takes on the full leadership of the chamber effective Jan. 23, 2020. Oyler will support several ongoing projects during his transition out of the organization.