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The Honorable Terri A. Sewell

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Information about The Honorable Terri A. Sewell

Profile image of The Honorable Terri A. Sewell

Profession

Category:
LawMakers
PoliticalMakers
Occupation(s):
Lawyer
Political Official

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Red
Favorite Food:
Fried Chicken, Smothered Pork Chops
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring, Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Beach
Favorite Quote:
As A Person Thinks So Is He.

Birthplace

Born:
1/1/1965
Birth Location:
Huntsville, Alabama

Profession

Category:
LawMakers
PoliticalMakers
Occupation(s):
Lawyer
Political Official

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Red
Favorite Food:
Fried Chicken, Smothered Pork Chops
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring, Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Beach
Favorite Quote:
As A Person Thinks So Is He.

Birthplace

Born:
1/1/1965
Birth Location:
Huntsville
See how The Honorable Terri A. Sewell is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Lawyer and political official Terri A. Sewell was born on January 1, 1965 in Huntsville, Alabama to Andrew A. Sewell and Nancy Gardner Sewell. She graduated from Selma High School in 1982, and received her B.A. degree from Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey in 1986. In 1988, Sewell received her M.A. degree from Oxford University. She then went on to attend Harvard Law School, where she earned her J.D. degree in 1992.

Sewell began her political career working for Congressman Richard Shelby and Senator Howell Helfin. After graduating from Harvard Law School, Sewell served as a law clerk to Chief Judge U.W. Clemon of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama. In 1994, Sewell began working at the law firm of Davis, Polk, & Wardwell, where she served as a securities lawyer for more than a decade. She returned to Alabama in 2004 and took a position as partner at the law offices of Maynard, Cooper, & Gale, P.C. Sewell distinguished herself as one of the few African American public finance lawyers in the State of Alabama. Her clients included the City of Selma, Dallas County Water Authority, Alabama State University, and Stillman College. In 2010, Sewell was elected to the United States House of Representatives as a representative from Alabama’s 7th District and as the first African American woman to serve in the Alabama Congressional delegation. Sewell was reelected to the House of Representatives three more times.

Sewell has served in numerous organizations, including as the chair and treasurer of St. Vincent’s Foundation’s board, as a board member of the Girl Scouts of Cahaba Council, as a board member of the Alabama Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, on the Community Advisory Board for the University of Alabama-Birmingham Minority Health and Research Center, on the Governing Board of the Alabama Council on Economic Education, and as a member of the Corporate Council for the Birmingham Art Museum. Sewell has also provided free legal services to the homeless, mentored girls of color through Dreams into Action, and served on the Alumni Advisory Board of Sponsors of Educational Opportunity.

Sewell has been awarded for her successful career and contributions to her community. In 2005, she was named one of the “Top Birmingham Women” by the Birmingham Business Journal. Sewell has also been listed in the magazine, Alabama Super Lawyers, and was named a “Woman of Influence” by Alabama Today. She was also awarded the Minority Business Rising Star Award by the Birmingham Business Journal in 2007.

Terri A. Sewell was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on May 3, 2017.

See how The Honorable Terri A. Sewell is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable Terri A. Sewell's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell lists her favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell describes her mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell talks about how her parents met
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell describes her mother's education
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell talks about her maternal family's roots in Lowndes County, Alabama
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell lists her mother's siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell describes her father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell describes her father's early influences
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell talks about her father's legacy
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell lists her father's siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell describes the sights and sounds of her childhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell describes her parents' betrothal
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell lists her siblings
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her family's reasons for moving to Selma, Alabama
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell describes her home in Selma, Alabama
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her twin brothers' mischief making
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls the start of her education
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her community in Selma, Alabama
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers Cedar Park Elementary School in Selma, Alabama
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers the civil rights leaders in her community in Selma, Alabama
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls visiting the Selma Public Library
  • Tape: 2 Story: 11 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell talks about her early interest in reading
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls her extracurricular activities
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls trying to fit in at Westside Junior High School in Selma, Alabama
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers losing her academic awards because of poor conduct
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell describes her achievements at Selma High School in Selma, Alabama
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell talks about her mother's influence
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls being approached by Julian McPhillips
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her admission to Princeton University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her early interest in law
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers enrolling at Princeton University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls being elected vice president of her freshman class
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her friendship with Michelle Obama
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell talks about her summer employment on Capitol Hill
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her time at Princeton University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls her graduation from Princeton University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her bachelor's thesis
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers enrolling at the University of Oxford
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her production of 'For Colored Girls' at the University of Oxford
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers publishing her master's thesis
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls her experiences at Harvard Law School
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers protesting for a black female professor at Harvard Law School
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her deferment from Harvard Law School
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell recalls her work after completing her law degree
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her clerkship under Judge U. W. Clemon, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - The Honorable Terri A. Sewell remembers her clerkship under Judge U. W. Clemon, pt. 2