About Kia Jarmon...
Kia Jarmon is an award-winning public relations and community engagement strategist for MEPR Agency, a company she founded in 2006. At the core, she is a communicator and culture shifter, facilitating an organization - business, nonprofit, or government agency - through incremental shifts that result in massive changes, without business interruption. Particularly, Jarmon's work is to change how an organization connects with stakeholders, including those that are sometimes dismissed as being too difficult to reach or easy to neglect, with the development of internal processes that lead to external trust, mutual investment, and shared power.
As a communicator she often challenges the traditional model of public relations and many's definition, which doesn't account for relationship development and two-way communication with a lens of inclusivity. She counters the sometimes hollow position of the PR industry by offering strategic counsel and technical assistance in a variety of topical areas, including (but certainly not limited to):
- operationalizing an organization, and developing communication channels to showcase the organization's sustainability;
- multicultural strategies;
- community led design/development processes;
- facilitating the intangible - like emotions and truth vs fact - that leads to documented outcomes;
- consideration of human behavior and social services and how each informs how we communicate;
- social and cultural resilience, and how years of trauma - also coined as Community PTSD by Jarmon - impact long-term community and neighborhood development;
- the understanding of language (how we use words) and how its access or lack of informs a communication process; and
- the presentation of intercultural communications and how it works alongside inclusion and equity programming.
A part of Jarmon's depth, has positioned her as one of the leading community engagement strategists in Nashville. With years of experience working on many notable initiatives, she is most known for her innovative and disruptive communication programs - translating grasstops campaigns into actionable, grassroots initiatives. Specifically, she leads her team through a proven methodology - listen, educate, engage, collaborate, empower - that is custom-fit for each process with measurement and pivots included as necessary.
As a result of Jarmon’s commitment to the community and communications industry, she has been recognized by the Minority Business Center as the Minority Business of the Year, the Middle Tennessee Diversity Forum as the “Woman to Watch”, and the Nashville Business Journal’s “Top Forty Under 40” and “Women of Influence”, among others.
With a heart for philanthropy and mentorship, she has successfully graduated more than 20 young women from the Mentorship Project, a non-traditional weekend school for aspiring PR professionals. Additionally, she launched the MEPR Agency Innovation Fund, her company's micro-business grant for small businesses.
Kia Jarmon is a highly sought after speaker, known as kiss with a fist, bringing candid yet caring workshops, training, and facilitation within the Southeast, leading conversations about intercultural communications, intentional storytelling and story listening, community building and engagement, nonprofit communications, and social and digital strategies. She is also a trained and listed Rule 31 Civil Mediator and navigates the intersection between conflict and communication.
In addition to her entrepreneurial pursuits, Jarmon serves on the Metropolitan Beer Permit board and is a co-chair for the PRSA Nashville diversity committee. She is also a consultant with the Center for Nonprofit Management.
Minority Business of the Year - Nashville Minority Business Center (2017)
Nashville Black 40 Under 40 (2015)
Women of Influence (Entrepreneur) - Nashville Business Journal (2011)
Forty Under 40 - Nashville Business Journal (2010)
Woman to Watch - Middle Tennessee Diversity Forum (2010)
Nashville's 30 Under 30 - Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (2010)