Commission on Human Rights
Longest serving KY Human Rights Commissioner retires today
LOUISVILLE – Kentucky Human Rights Commissioner Thurmond Coleman Sr. retired today during the commission’s monthly meeting held at Louisville headquarters.
The African American man who is in his 70s sat on the commission for 16 years, from 1992 to 2008, most recently as a state-at-large representative, and is the longest-serving commissioner in the agency’s 48 years.
The Kentucky Commission on Human Rights gave Commissioner Coleman a standing ovation after passing a resolution to thank him for his years of diligent commitment in ruling on discrimination complaints for the people of Kentucky. He has worked to close thousands of cases during his tenure.
Chair Henry Curtis and Executive Director John J. Johnson present the commissioner with a special recognition plaque to honor him.
“Commissioner Coleman has given his very best as a citizen of Kentucky and has done an outstanding job of helping lead his state toward equality and opportunity for all people,” said Johnson.
“I have had the privilege of serving this commission under four different governors,” Coleman said. “I consider myself very fortunate to have been a member of the Kentucky Human Rights Commission for so long and I thank God for the opportunity,” he said.
A resident of Jeffersontown, Ky., just outside Louisville, he is the retired pastor of First Baptist Church of Jeffersontown where he served for 45 years. He is a former minister of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Louisville, former interim pastor at New Canaan Baptist Church, interim pastor at Greater Good Hope Baptist Church for 14 months, and former manager of the American Baptist Newspaper.
He has held many memberships including General Association of Baptists in Kentucky; former vice president of the Louisville Branch of the NAACP; NAACP Ministerial Coalition; past chair of Louisville Urban League Board; president of Jeffersontown Association of Christian Congregations; Jefferson County Welfare-to-Work Task Force and the Jefferson County Crime Commission. He has been honored with a building, street and gymnasium named after him.•