Mrs. Bertha Louise Coleman Poe, daughter of the late Deacon John Coleman and Mrs. Bertha Phillips Coleman, was born on September 23,1947; in Union Springs, Alabama. At an early age, Mrs. Poe professed her faith in Christ and joined Mt. Silla Missionary Baptist Church in Union Springs, Alabama.
Bertha attended Carver High School, where she was the Valedictorian of her class. In 1967, she matriculated from Alabama State University with a bachelor’s degree in Business Education. She became a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated in 1965.
She also graduated from Wayne State University, where she received her master’s degree, and an Education Specialist. She taught for decades in the Highland Park School District, after which she was a Union leader of the Michigan Federation of Teachers.
Mrs. Poe became the first woman and first black woman to be Secretary Treasure for the Michigan AFL-CIO, later, she worked for the Wayne County Visitors Bureau as an Account Executive. She became the Assistant Superintendent of Personnel for the Highland Park Public Schools, from which she retired.
She came to Union Springs and became a Licensed Funeral Director at Poe’s Memory Chapel Funeral Home in Union Springs, Alabama.
Mrs. Poe was united in holy matrimony to Dr. James V. Poe, Jr. (aka Dr. Jabari V. Prempeh) on October 19, 1967. This union was blessed with three children. They had been married for 53 years. Mrs. Poe was an active member of Unity Baptist Church Usher Board in Detroit Michigan, and the Detroit/ Bullock County NAACP.
She leaves to mourn: Her Husband: Dr, James V. Poe, Jr.(Dr. Jabari V. Prempeh), Her Siblings; Mrs. Julia Irvin, Mrs. Bernice Morgan, Mrs. Mary Burton, Mrs. Johnnie Parker, Pastor John (Mattie) Coleman, Dr. Rubye (Dr. Johnny) Sanders, a nephew that is like a brother, John Bernard (Carolyn) Jones and a brother/ God brother Rodney V. Taylor. Her Children; Crystal Poe, Atty. Jabari (Atty. Gladys Ayala) Prempeh and Villi (Willie James) Nelson. Nieces and Nephews; The late Edward Reginald Reynolds, Nieces; Evg. LaSaundra (Pastor Jeffrey) Williams, Valerie (Michael) Robinson, Tomekia Jordan; Nephews; Sammie Moore, Atty. J’ohn Sanders, and John Coleman IV. Grandchildren; Rachelle A. Louise Poe, Tyrese Jay Coleman Poe, Taylor R. Elizabeth R. Poe, Ava Ayala Prempeh, Willie Nelson Jr., Jabari Coleman Ayala Prempeh III, Prince Nelson, and Lauryn Ayala Prempeh, and a host of grand-nieces and grand-nephews, cousins, relatives and friends.