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President & CEO Michelle Merriweather


Merriweather to guide new initiatives for region’s historic civil rights organization

(Seattle) – As it starts its 88th year leading the community in civil rights advancements, the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle has named Michelle Merriweather, 40, as its new president and chief executive officer. After a nationwide search, the local Board of Directors voted unanimously this week to elevate Merriweather to the helm of the Seattle affiliate of the Urban League Movement after serving as its vice president since 2015. Merriweather, considered a strong, transformational, visionary leader and builder, succeeds Pamela Banks who served as President and CEO of the Seattle affiliate for the past five years.

“On behalf of the board, I am pleased to announce we have found the best candidate to lead us in making significant impact on issues facing our region” said Leesa Manion, chair. “I want to commend the executive search committee for the integrity of this very important selection process over the last several months. With more than two dozen stellar candidates for the position, Michelle rose to the very top as the appropriate choice today to lead this venerable organization forward with impactful and transformational leadership.”

Merriweather will guide the Urban League’s “2020 Vision” initiatives to prepare the community to meet challenges faced by African-American and other under-served communities in area of employment, homelessness, youth and family support, and bridging health and wealth disparities. A longtime member of the National Urban League Movement, she becomes the thirteenth president and CEO of the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle. Merriweather will lead a strong staff and volunteer team focused in the areas of workforce development, education, health, housing, and public policy.

"Michelle Merriweather is one of the bright young stars of the Urban League Movement,” said Marc Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League. “I congratulate the Chair and entire Board on an excellent selection and I pledge to work closely and enthusiastically with Ms. Merriweather as she prepares to lead one of our most important affiliates into a new era.”

Michelle joined the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle team in August of 2015. In her role as vice president Michelle led the programs, fund development, and operations of the organization. Her passion is utilizing her extensive sales, fund development, event planning and marketing background to better the communities in which she serves. Prior to joining the League movement, she had a successful career in sales and marketing with many major organizations including Starbucks, Heinz, and Coca Cola.

A Los Angeles native, her passion for giving voice to the voiceless, led her to volunteer for the Los Angeles Urban League. Her role grew from volunteer, to the first woman President of the Los Angeles Urban League Young Professionals and an active member of their Board of Directors. Michelle also served as the Communications Chair for the National Urban League Young Professionals.

Merriweather received her undergraduate degree from Xavier University of Louisiana and is an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, Seattle Alumnae Chapter.


About the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle: Founded in 1930, the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle is the city’s premier community organization in advancing equal opportunities on behalf of African Americans and other minority youths and adults through innovative job training, job placement, youth achievement and housing programs. Through its collective programs, services and advocacy activities and seven offices located in the Central District, serves over 5,000 constituents annually. Overseen by a dedicated Board of Directors and accomplished Executive Team, the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle is one of 88 affiliates of the National Urban League, throughout the United States.