Jackson, Miss. – Gov. Phil Bryant announced today that he has appointed Rep. Linda F. Coleman to the bench in Mississippi’s 11th Circuit Court District.
Coleman will replace Judge Johnnie E. Walls, who recently retired. Coleman’s appointment is effective immediately. The 11th District includes Bolivar, Coahoma, Quitman and Tunica counties. A special election for the judgeship will be held in November.
Coleman will resign her seat in the Mississippi House of Representatives. Gov. Bryant will set a special election to fill the vacant seat in the 29th District.
“Rep. Coleman’s legal experience and her years in the Legislature will serve her well on the bench,” Gov. Bryant said. “I am pleased she has agreed to accept this appointment.”
Coleman has represented the 29th District in the House since 1992. It includes parts of Bolivar and Sunflower counties. In the House, Coleman was vice chairwoman of the Corrections Committee. She served on the Appropriations, Judiciary A, Judiciary En Banc, County Affairs, Municipalities, Ports, Harbors and Airports and Transportation Committees.
She started her legal career in 1987, when she went to work as a staff attorney for North Mississippi Rural Legal Services in Clarksdale. Coleman served as a managing attorney for NMRLS from 1989-1994. She still serves on the organization’s board of directors.
Since 1994, she has been a sole practitioner out of her office in Cleveland. In that period, she has represented the town of Mound Bayou, the town of Coahoma, the town of Friars Point, the Bolivar County Board of Supervisors and the Mound Bayou School Board.
“I am honored to accept Gov. Bryant’s appointment as circuit court judge, and I am grateful to the members of the Judicial Appointment Advisory Committee for making the recommendation,” Coleman said. “After 25 years of legislative service and almost 30 years of practice, I look forward to this new challenge with great anticipation and enthusiasm. But most of all, I look forward to serving the citizens of the 11th Circuit Court District in a different capacity.”
Coleman, who lives in Mound Bayou, received her bachelor’s degree in public administration from the University of Mississippi. She received her juris doctorate from the Mississippi College School of Law. She is a member of the Mississippi Bar Association, the Magnolia Bar Association, of which she is a life member, the Council of State Governments and the Mississippi Association of Board Attorneys.