Interview with Charlie Harman, January 8, 2018

Collection: Two-Party Georgia Oral History Project

Dublin Core


Harman discusses his early life, focusing on the events that became the foundation of his political views. He then talks about joining Sam Nunn’s senate staff and working his way up the ranks to become Nunn’s chief of staff. Harman also talks about Nunn’s personality and role in the U.S. Senate. Harman then details the viewpoints the Georgia Chamber of Commerce forwarded while he was the organization’s president. Harman talk about his tenure as chief of staff for Senators Zell Miller and Saxby Chambliss. Harman next describes how Republican governance in Georgia differs from Democratic governance, as well as the weaknesses both parties are struggling with in Georgia. He concludes by predicting the effects Donald Trump could have on politics, both in Georgia and nationally.

Charlie Harman grew up in Atlanta in the 1950s and 1960s. He attended the University of Georgia, from which he graduated with a B.A. in business in 1971. During this time, he interned at Richard B. Russell’s senate office in Washington, D.C., which jumpstarted Harman’s lifelong love of politics. Harman first joined Senator Sam Nunn’s staff as a caseworker in 1980, getting promoted to be Nunn’s chief of staff in 1987. Harman left Nunn’s office in 1992 to become the president of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, leaving that position in 1996 to become the head of Blue Cross Blue Shield’s government affairs. Harman briefly served as Zell Miller’s transitional chief of staff in 2000 when Miller was appointed as U.S. Senator. Harman left Blue Cross Blue Shield in 2006 to join Saxby Chambliss’s Senate office as chief of staff, holding that position until 2013.






Oral History Item Type Metadata


Athens, Georgia


116 minutes


Charlie Harman and Ashton Ellett, “Interview with Charlie Harman, January 8, 2018,” UGA Special Collections Libraries Oral Histories, accessed July 3, 2020,