Often sought to coordinate major undertakings for the Democratic National Committee, as well as private organizations, Yolanda's list of professional achievements showcases nearly 25 years of organizational ability and management expertise. She is often the senior level executive called upon to coordinate many diverse party efforts. Some of her accomplishments include serving as deputy assistant political director for the Mondale/Ferraro '84 General Election; director of the DNC's Fairness Commission (1985); chief of staff of the National Rainbow Coalition, the 1988 Jesse Jackson for President Campaign and deputy chair of the Democratic National Committee under Chairman Paul G. Kirk.
Since founding The Caraway Group in 1987, she has led her team in the counseling of a number of well-known Fortune 500 companies, nonprofit organizations, government agencies and high-profile individuals in every aspect of communications strategy. She is a nationally recognized public relations and public affairs strategist who is known for policy-making, political management and public relations work in government and the nonprofit and private sectors.
She has worked with major U.S. companies such as Microsoft Corp., MGM MIRAGE, Bristol Myers Squibb, MCI, Mitsubishi and Texaco. She has also counseled government and nonprofit agencies such as the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, the Center for American Progress, the NATO 50th Anniversary Summit, and the Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial Foundation Project.
Yolanda played a pivotal role in the historic election of the late Secretary of Commerce Ron Brown to chair the Democratic National Committee in 1989. Because of her political expertise and institutional knowledge of the DNC, Chairman Brown selected her to serve as his senior advisor at party headquarters. She assumed many responsibilities during her tenure, chief among them was management of the site selection process for the 1992 Democratic National Convention.
In 1990, Yolanda served as the national coordinator for the first Mayor's Urban Summit. Hosted by then-mayor David N. Dinkins of New York City, the summit was deemed a resounding success and has served as a model for subsequent mayoral summits. In November of 1992, after one of the most successful democratic conventions in history and the successful election of President Bill Clinton, then-Chairman Ron Brown once again called upon Yolanda to serve as his deputy for the President Inaugural Committee.
In 1998, Yolanda was appointed vice chair of the 2000 Site Advisory Committee and later served as executive producer of Democracy Live! 2000, a series of live, talk-show type broadcasts designed to reach cable and Internet audiences during the 2000 Democratic National Convention.
Yolanda has served as an elected member-at-large of the DNC since 1988, and is a member of the DNC's Standing Committee on Rules and is currently on the Standing Committee on Resolutions. And in 2009, Yolanda was appointed to the Council on American Politics, a group of nationally renowned political leaders addressing current affairs and working toward the growth and enrichment of The George Washington University School of Political Management.