Success Story Women of Value January 25, 2021 at 09:38 am

Newly-elected Harper Woods judge Rebekah Coleman just made history, and was sworn in by dad who’s also a judge

Ama Nunoo January 25, 2021 at 09:38 am

January 25, 2021 at 09:38 am | Success Story, Women of Value

Rebekah Coleman is the first female and Black judge and she got sworn in by her father who is also a judge. Photo: Rebekah Coleman/LinkedIn

Having grown up in a legal home, Attorney Rebekah Coleman knew that being in the legal field is the best way to provide justice to her community because her parents were proof that proper representation in matters was invaluable. Going full circle, Coleman is now the newly-elected judge in the State of Michigan’s 32A District (Harper Woods), and her father, who is also a judge, had the honor of swearing her into office.

This appointment makes the 35-year-old lawmaker the first female magistrate to ever hold the position and also the first Black American judge to win the seat in Michigan city in nearly seven decades.

Her father basked in pride as he swore her in on December 28 last year, according to a court statement. She, in turn, savored the moment. “I was able to share this very special moment with my father as he swore me in as Judge of the 32A District Court,” she told The Female Influencer.

It is the duty of the newly-elected magistrate to focus on community-based programs that offer literacy programs, legal aid for civil and landlord-tenant division, alternative sentencing, and drug and sobriety treatment programs for residents.

Coleman, who intends bridging the gap between the community and the Court, is passionate about legal aid for all. She said she wants to eliminate judicial rubber stamping, and the community court will perform the above duties with ease. “I am very excited to be the next judge of Harper Woods. I plan to bring a lot of positive changes, and I think the city is ready for it,” she explained. “Court is going to be a full-time operation, Monday through Friday,” she said.  

According to Ballotpedia, Coleman won the seat by 448 votes, carrying 53% of the majority vote over incumbent Daniel Palmer on November 3, who had 47% of the votes.

She took to social media to express her gratitude to the voters. “Harper Woods, you spoke! You spoke in volumes! You spoke with your votes!  You answered clearly and boldly the call for change,” she wrote.

“Thank you for having the courage to go against the status quo and for building the foundation on which the legal system in the City will stand.”

She extended her love to her late mother, April Howard Coleman, who was also an attorney. “Mom, I got it done and will continue to live the life that you helped prepare me for before you had to leave us. It has been 15 years, but there is not a moment that you are not missed,” Coleman expressed.

Coleman, who aspires to be appointed to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University in 2007 then completed her Juris Doctorate in 2010 at Wayne State Law School in Detroit.

Four years later, she earned her master’s degree in business administration from the University of Detroit Mercy. The Detroit native has a wealth of experience in the State of Michigan using her expertise to help thousands of clients. She is also running a general practice law firm and has a profound knowledge of the legal system making justice her paramount goal.

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