Vi’s Experience & Key Accomplishments
Vi Alexander Lyles is nationally recognized as an outstanding and ground-breaking public administrator. Vi is a visionary city leader with over 40 years of public service leadership experience in Charlotte. She is known for collaboration, leadership and commitment to the city. Vi is a professionally trained facilitator and executive coach, completing programs at the Harvard Institute of Government, North Carolina State University, and the Lee Institute’s American Leadership Forum. Throughout Vi’s entire career, her commitment to making Charlotte a better place to live, work and raise a family has been unwavering. She values the abilities of working with the right people and using accurate information and sound reasoning to create a better community.
City of Charlotte
In her career with the City of Charlotte, Vi developed a reputation as a visionary leader who worked hard for all Charlotte neighborhoods, particularly those which were historically underrepresented. Vi was Assistant City Manager for the City of Charlotte from 1996 to 2004. She started her career as an analyst in the city’s budget department, and she later became Charlotte’s Budget Director. Vi is most remembered for making the city government a more humane entity with connections to the communities it serves. She was known as a champion for all neighborhoods. In her nearly 30 years of work for city government, some of Vi’s key accomplishments are:
- Developed 22 balanced budgets and assisted with the creation of the city’s first capital budget.
- Directed the restructuring of government programs to evaluate and assess performance audits for city programs.
- Lead the development of the Community Safety Plan, which included community policing.
- Guided the development of the city’s affordable housing plan and Mecklenburg County’s Minority and Women’s Business Enterprise Program, a race-neutral program for small businesses. These community programs have significantly enhanced the quality of life for historically underrepresented populations in Charlotte.
After her retirement from the City of Charlotte, Vi remained committed to leading Charlotte to be a world-class city.
- Consulting Director with both The Lee Institute and Flynn Heath Holt Leadership, she leads corporate and not-for-profit governmental organizations in leadership, strategic planning and project implementation to achieve tangible results.
- Startup Director for the Charlotte Mecklenburg Coalition for Housing, she worked with a newly formed citizen’s advisory group to revitalize the local government plan to end and prevent homelessness.
- Director of Community Outreach for the Democratic National Convention Host Committee, she designed Mayor Anthony Foxx’s Legacy Program based on research and community values. The program still impacts communities and neighborhoods throughout the city. She engaged women and minorities in every aspect of the convention to ensure that the national gathering truly represented the best of Charlotte.
Charlotte City Council
Inspired by leaders like Harvey Gantt and Anthony Foxx before her, in 2012, Vi decided to run for Charlotte City Council. She is proud and humbled to have been elected an At-Large seat for two consecutive terms. Recognized as a leader amongst her peers, in 2014, the Council elected her Mayor Pro-Temp. In her tenure on the City Council, Vi has:
- Chaired Transportation and Planning Committee, served as vice chair of Economic Development Committee and as a member of the Budget Committee
- Served as the Charlotte Representative on Charlotte Regional Transportation Planning Organization and the Centralina Freight Mobility Committee
Her key accomplishments include:
- Re-Do of the NCDOT process on Citizen Engagement for Noise Walls
- Led the adoption of the Pre-Apprenticeship Program, which invested $1 million in job training for highway and vertical construction and fiber optic cable installation careers
- Created a 7 Point Plan for an Equitable Charlotte, which includes calls for a Citizen Review Board reset with reorganization and subpoena power; creation of Neighborhood Advisory Committee in each police districts; and increased investment in affordable housing, which Council has acted upon under Vi’s leadership
- Led the Council Community Action Plan, resulting in state legislation for citizen review board subpoena power
- Novant Healthcare Board of Directors
- Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority (CRVA), Vice-Chair
- Presbyterian Healthcare Board of Trustees, Chair
- Wachovia Southern Region Board
- Charlotte Chamber Executive Committee
- Queens University Board of Trustees
- Foundation For The Carolinas Board of Directors
- Charlotte Housing Authority Scholarship Fund Board Chair
- Communities In Schools of Charlotte Board Chair
- Arts and Science Council Board of Directors
Awards & Accolades
- 1993 Leadership Charlotte Excellence Award
- 1996 South Carolina Black Hall of Fame
- 2000 National Forum for Black Public Administrators Conference Leadership Award
- 2003 Charlotte Woman of the Year
- 2006 Johnson YMCA Spirit of Charlotte Award
- 2007 UNCF Women Who Lead Award
- 2015 UNC Alumni Achievement Award
- 2016 Nations Ford Community Church Service Award
- 2016 Bahailu Makes a Difference Award