Dr. Lisa Caraway Oliver is a distinguished life transitions educator and a former chaplain, specializing in guiding individuals through the complex terrain of life changes and their enduring impacts, particularly focusing on grief, mourning, and bereavement. Her educational initiatives aim to help individuals comprehend the profound emotions and actions that may accompany loss, underlining her belief in the empowering nature of education for making informed decisions.
Dr. Oliver's passion for her work stems from a profound desire to mitigate generational dysfunction that often arises when families postpone discussions on these inevitable life topics. Holding a Doctor of Education in Adult Education from the University of Georgia, she conducted research within the framework of death and dying, emotion work, and informal learning, specifically focusing on the work of hospice care professionals.
She earned her Master of Science in Instructional Technology from Georgia State University and her Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Howard University. In addition to her educational background, Dr. Oliver is a Level I Chaplain with Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) certification from Grady Healthcare, one of the busiest Level I trauma centers in the United States.
Dr. Oliver actively engages with the community, co-facilitating the Life Transitions Education Ministry at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church alongside Sharyn M. Hailey, MSW. In this role, she not only organizes workshops and seminars on life transitions but also oversees a 7-week Trauma Healing Group, an 8-week grief ministry, Walking the Mourner's Path, and monthly grief support sessions. Beyond the church, her community involvement spans facilitating Death Cafes and a Life Transitions Education Series across the Fulton, Gwinnett, and Fayette County Public Library Systems. Dr. Oliver has also been instrumental in coordinating a "Free Hugs" campaign at the Black Atlanta Pride Community Festival and the Atlanta Pride Festival.
In addition to her community engagement, Dr. Oliver serves as a board member for The Liminal House, a Georgia 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to providing inclusive, nonjudgmental, modern, reflective, and comfortable death-positive experiences. The organization aims to alleviate the stress, pain, confusion, burden, and regret associated with end-of-life scenarios. She is also a board member of Georgians for End of Life Options (GAELO), a state-wide organization focused on expanding end-of-life options for all Georgians. Furthermore, Dr. Oliver leads the Advanced Care Planning Task Force, showcasing her commitment to promoting thoughtful planning for end-of-life care.
Originally from Atlantic City, New Jersey, Dr. Oliver and her family reside in Atlanta, Georgia, where she continues to make meaningful contributions to the community and the field of life transitions education.
Because these conversations are essential with our families and loved ones before they become obligatory.
Consider this: not everyone can or wants to experience pregnancy and childbirth. Yet, if I were to inquire with 10 people about aspects of pregnancy or childbirth, I would expect that 9 out of 10 could share some information, such as only females can get pregnant, and the typical duration of pregnancy is around nine months.
On the contrary, EVERYONE WILL EXPERIENCE THE TRANSITION FROM LIFE TO DEATH. Many of us don't contemplate all the facets associated with this transition until we or someone we care about is in an Intensive Care Unit, and decisions regarding the type of care must be made.
Choose to leave a legacy of peace and order; initiate discussions about (and, more importantly, DOCUMENT AND SHARE) your decisions regarding life transitions. I am here to provide assistance and guidance throughout this process.