Charlyn S. Jarrells | Founder | The Jarrells Group | TN

Charlyn Jarrells founded The Jarrells Group after nearly two decades of executive-level experience working at the world’s largest retailer, Walmart, Inc. Charlyn has an extensive record of leadership and responsibility in human resources, diversity and inclusion, management-side labor relations, talent review, employee engagement, human resource policies/practices and employment law. She has focused her consulting in the strategic areas of Human Resources and Diversity and Inclusion to all sizes of organizations and companies.

Charlyn began her career as an employment law attorney. After serving in a variety of positions, she was promoted to Senior Vice President of Human Resources for all Walmart U.S. divisions. Later, she was named the company’s first Global Chief Diversity Officer. In these roles, she honed her skills and expertise on issues in the areas of workforce planning, talent review, as well as compliance law, applicant tracking, and strategies designed to increase a more diverse, inclusive and engaged workforce – all during a time when Walmart was rapidly expanding its reach and customer base.

Through each new experience and position, Charlyn’s ability to merge her strong work ethic, background, thought leadership, and a keen sense of corporate responsibility afforded her numerous opportunities to tackle the employment-related challenges facing Wal-Mart as the world’s largest retailer and private employer. Charlyn’s career has been built upon developing a track record of creating and managing new departments and developing effective strategies to re-engineer existing corporate programs. Her accomplishments include establishing Walmart’s labor relations department and strategy at a time when Wal-Mart was dramatically growing its grocery business. Charlyn championed programs such as job posting for all positions, particularly entry-level management positions to ensure Walmart had the management talent to fuel its growth. She also established Walmart’s mentoring program which grew to include more than 200,000 employees. At the officer level, Charlyn strengthened Walmart’s talent review process to encourage the cross-divisional and cross-functional experience of executives.

Charlyn created Walmart’s first Diversity and Inclusion department and established the strategic planning and execution of diversity and inclusion initiatives for the corporation and it’s more than 2 million employees worldwide. In her first year as Chief Diversity Officer, she gained the support of the executive management team and the Board of Directors to implement a formal diversity goals program and tied company officer compensation to the achievement of diversity goals. Charlyn reported annually to the Board of Directors, and quarterly to the Board’s Compensation, Nominating and Governance Committee on the achievement of the company’s diversity and inclusion goals program. At the heart of the goals program was to increase the representation of women and people of color in management and ensure officers were actively involved in recruiting strategies, development programs and community initiatives aimed at creating a more inclusive work environment and outreach to the diverse communities in which Walmart served.

Charlyn was nominated and selected to attend prestigious executive development programs conducted at Dartmouth College, the University of Michigan and the University of Chicago. She served as an active board member and past chair for CUE, Inc., an international organization devoted to creating positive employee environments. She also held board positions and served on a variety of advisory councils in the areas of human resources and diversity, including Diversity Best Practices Advisory Council, and the Wharton Center for Human Resources Research Advisory Group.

More recently, Charlyn was appointed by the British Government to serve as a member of the selection committee for the prestigious George C. Marshall Scholarship. The Marshall Scholarship provides American scholars the opportunity for graduate level study at a UK institution. She served for two years.

Charlyn currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Nashville Ballet where she is the Chair of the Human Resources Committee. She previously served on the Board of Directors of the Sexual Assault Center of Nashville where she was chair of the Human Resources committee.