Bernetta Lanier is a native Savannahian and a fourth-generation resident of the Hudson Hill Neighborhood in West Savannah. A graduate of Groves High School, Bernetta attended South Carolina State University where in 1981 she earned a Bachelor degree in Political Science. After undergraduate school, she returned home to Savannah and in 1989 earned a Master Degree in Public Administration at Savannah State University. She has been an outspoken community advocate and community organizer for the Westside of Savannah for over 2 decades.
Bernetta worked 14 years in local government in capacities of Police Dispatcher, Management & Budget Analyst in the County Manager’s Office and as Operations Analyst in Engineering and Public Works.
As the owner of NSB Management Group, for 10 years Bernetta worked as a Small Business and Marketing Consultant with a client base that includes local and national corporations that includes:
- BET/Simmons Communications
- Nickelodeon Television
- Addison Motors
- ACT Holding Company
- The City of Savannah; and
- Trisenx Technologies, where Mrs. Lanier contracted as Chief Operating Officer
Some of Bernetta Lanier’s associations and affiliations include:
- Chairwoman of The Gentrification Task Force under Mayor Otis Johnson, in which the final documented report won national acclaim.
- Bernetta founded the West Bay Farmers Market and Urban Agricultural Project. In partnership with the State of GA, this program employed local teens from Chatham County’s Foster Care System.
- As an advocate for vulnerable children subjected to the court system, Bernetta and a small group of local crusaders founded Savannah’s Court Appointed Special Advocates, CASA.
- Bernetta is a Graduate of Leadership Savannah Class of 1994.
- She served as Secretary of The Savannah Business League.
- An original Residents Team member, Bernetta worked with Step Up Savannah and she also served on its Board of Directors.
- She has served on the Board of the Hospital Authority.
- In 2005, she Founded Ivory Bay, a Resident-driven Community Development Corporation. This CDC was initially designed to protect the underserved people of the Westside of Savannah from the onslaught of ill managed growth, development and gentrification. Its purpose is to build wealth in Low-Wealth Communities by utilizing Asset-Based Economic Development. Mrs. Lanier presently serves as President and CEO of this wealth creation model. Ivory Bay is incorporated in the State of GA and is a 501 (c) 3 organization.
- Mrs. Lanier served as President of the Hudson Hill Community Organization in the last decade and she is currently serving in that capacity again.
Bernetta holds 3 Post Graduate Certifications. She is a:
- Certified Government Analyst through the University of VA
- Certified Government Manager through the University of GA; and
- Certified Georgia Economic Developer through the Carl Vinson Institute of Government at UGA.
Mrs. Lanier is currently working as a Longshorewoman with ILA Local 1414 in the Port of Savannah.
Bernetta is married to Oscar and she has two adult daughters, NeTia Signate (Moussa) and Sylvia Anderson, and a Grandson, Muhammad Signate.