Merika Coleman: Mom, Legislator, Lawyer, Educator
First elected as Alabama’s youngest state legislator, it has been my honor serving you and your family in public office since 2002. In the House of Representatives, holding a number of leadership roles including Assistant Minority Leader, I have worked tirelessly to sponsor and support critical legislation that betters the lives of all Alabamians.
As a state representative, I was instrumental in creating a 10-member committee for the purpose of restructuring and removing racist language from the Alabama Constitution. Further, I have passed 3 anti-human trafficking bills in the 2019 legislative session, alone, and was recognized as “Legislator of the Year” by the Alabama Coalition Against Domestic Violence. On a national level, I have had the privilege of being recognized for my work on behalf of the entire state of Alabama by being named one of 10 individuals submitted by the Southern Crescent Regional Commission Coalition to President Biden as an immediate appointment as Federal Co-Chair for the Commission. Additionally, I was proud to serve as the Alabama Co-chair for Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign and a spokesperson for his 2012 reelection campaign. I have served as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention (DNC) 3 times, twice for President Obama and, most recently, for presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016.
In addition to holding elected office, I have served in numerous professional development roles across the Birmingham-metro area. Prior to my current position at Miles College and establishing my law practice - the Law Offices of Merika Coleman - I served as Director of Community and Economic Development for Lawson State Community College and Director of Economic and Community Development for the City of Bessemer. Educationally, I am the byproduct of Birmingham schools, having received my Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication and Masters in Public Administration from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and my Juris Doctorate from the Birmingham School of Law. Additionally, I am a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and the Links, Inc.
Although I wear many hats professionally, I make it my mission to remain rooted in community. On a local level, I serve as a Board Member of the Greater Birmingham Ministries and a founding member of the Midfield Voter’s League. Furthermore, I am a co-founder of the Derrick Richardson Foundation, a foundation honoring my late husband who passed in February, 2020.
Although I have accomplished a great number of things both professionally and personally, I remain adamant that my life’s greatest accomplishment is being a mother. My two children, Elexia and Xaviar, are both currently pursuing higher education in Birmingham. My daughter Elexia earned her undergraduate degree at Vanderbilt University in 2019 and is studying to receive her Masters of Public Health at UAB. My son Xaviar is a junior business major at Miles College. I am incredibly proud of the people they are, and I thank them for their constant support of my work as both their mother and a servant leader.