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In The Arena

Jun 12, 2020

A county and national leader, Alisha Bell has learned how to be a successful public official by following the path her mother laid down. Now she ensures that her actions will help those who will one day follow her.

Whether she is Commission Chair for Wayne County, Mich., president of both the National Association of Black County Officials and the Women of the National Association of Counties, or founding her own charity program, there does not seem to be anything that Alisha Bell cannot do.

Bell’s success helps to uplift her community. When she was elected to the County Commission in 2002, she was the youngest African American woman in the entire nation elected to the post. Now, she is glad that she no longer holds that title, because it means that “there are so many more young African American women who have now sought out county government as a way to serve their community.”

Ultimately, helping other people has always been Alisha Bell’s mission. She now serves the county where she was born and raised, giving her a strong connection to the community. When she faces challenges, she reminds herself to “be true to yourself, stay the course,” because she simply wants to make a difference in the lives of all Wayne County residents.

Even as Detroit and other areas of Wayne County have been hit hard by COVID-19, Bell has been working with the county commission to tackle the virus and protect the community. “It's a slow process and we want to make sure that all of our employees are safe as they go back to work in the Wayne County buildings and then make sure that people get tested at the general public so that we know where our numbers are,” she says.

Listen to the latest In the Arena episode to hear more about Alisha Bell’s prom dress donation program, her unique professional bond to her mother and the impact that the death of George Floyd has had on Wayne County.

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