For more than 40 years of public service, Carol Camp White has maintained the highest ethical and professional standards in serving both Republican and Democratic administrations and is widely respected for her knowledge and ability. Carol officially retires July 28 but will continue to work for the agency on a part-time basis assisting in budgetary and operational projects.
Since 2011, Carol has been the Associate Director of Operations for the Tennessee Arts Commission. Her service at the Commission has been especially rewarding for Carol as it has allowed her to work on behalf of arts organizations across Tennessee, an area of deep personal interest. She has an abiding love of art in all forms and has been especially active in the classical music community in Nashville.
“It has been such a pleasure to get to know and to work with Carol White. She is not only highly skilled in her field, but she is also the consummate team member and leader, and most importantly the role model for integrity. Plus, how often do you find someone like that who is just fun to be around?” said Jan McNally, FY2021 Commission Chair.
During Carol’s tenure at the Commission, she has overseen the transition to a complete online grants system, led the agency to complete a statewide economic impact study, and among many other projects, streamlined the payment process of grants greatly increasing the efficiency of the agency. Carol was instrumental in drafting the Commission’s 2015 and 2020 five-year strategic plans, which strengthened the agency as a leader for innovation and excellence.
“Throughout her years at the Commission, Carol worked diligently to reduce the cost of doing business, identify opportunities to enhance open government practices, and maximize the return on public investment,” said Anne B. Pope, Commission Executive Director. “I am very grateful that Carol’s path included the Tennessee Arts Commission and it has been one of my greatest honors to have served with her. The arts and culture in Tennessee have benefited greatly because of Carol White’s work.”
“I have never seen anyone who gets so excited by numbers, budgets, and spreadsheets! Carol White’s enthusiasm for her job is very admirable and her sweet smile is contagious,” said Joe Kilgore, FY2020 Commission Chair.
Carol has spent her entire career in public service. After two years at the Congressional Budget Office, Carol returned to Tennessee. In January 1987, she became the Deputy Director of the Tennessee State Planning Office and was later named Director of that office. From 1994 through 2008, she served as founding Executive Director of Volunteer Tennessee, overseeing the development of Tennessee’s first year-round youth service corps. She was subsequently named Director of the Shared Services Solutions Division of the Department of Finance and Administration and spearheaded efforts to help smaller state agencies handle their accounting, procurement, and human resources.
“She is a consummate professional. She is always prepared. She is always a delight. But most of all, Carol is a wonderful person. I am better for knowing her,” said Steve Bailey, FY2019 Commission Chair.
As an undergraduate at Vanderbilt University, she received a Lyndon Johnson Congressional Internship and served as an intern for then-Congressman Albert Gore, Jr. She served as a State Intern for the Tennessee House Finance Ways and Means Committee during the 1980 session. In May 1980 she graduated from Vanderbilt University with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.
She received a Truman Scholarship, one of only 50 awarded throughout the United States each year, for graduate studies leading to a career in public service. Prior to beginning graduate school, she served for a year in the White House Office of Management and Budget at the beginning of the Reagan Administration. Upon completion of that work, she entered the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University, receiving her graduate degree in Public Affairs from Princeton in 1984. After graduation from Princeton, she accepted a position as a budget analyst with the Congressional Budget Office.
Carol was born in Memphis and grew up in McMinnville, Tennessee. She is the daughter of Jane Camp and the late Harry Camp, and granddaughter of H.D. and Jewell Sims and Elizabeth and Scott Camp of Sparta, Tennessee, a former member of the House of Representatives of the Tennessee General Assembly who later served for many years as district attorney and then chancellor. She has two children, Betsy who lives in Atlanta, and Scott, who lives in Nashville. She has been a member of Calvary United Methodist Church in Nashville since 1987 and has held numerous leadership and lay ministry positions in the church.
The Commission staff and board wish Carol the absolute best in her next chapter of life in New Mexico.