By Clyde Hughes | AC JosepH Media
ATLANTIC CITY â€“ Ciera Logan credits her parents with dedicating themselves to make sure she and sister have a bright future.
The Atlantic City native is now paying it forward as an executive board member with the Atlantic City branch of the NAACP and a local attorney with Fox Rothchild. The daughter of Pastor Marvin Graham and First Lady Karen Logan of Grace Today Ministries, Logan has become a leader in the community she grew up in.
“It takes a village to raise a child,” Logan told Front Runner New Jersey recently. “I’m the product of a family who poured into me my entire life. Not only have my parents had an unwavering commitment to my sister and I, but my extended family has always provided a level of support that has shaped me into the woman I am today.
“I’m also blessed to come across some phenomenal people during school and in my career who will be long term mentors and friends,” she added.
Following the Law
As an associate attorney at Fox Rothchild, Logan handles a wide range of litigation matters, including tax, complex commercial litigation, data privacy and security, business agreements and compliance matters. She also advises clients on a wide range of labor and employment matters.
Before being hired at Fox Rothchild, the Emory University School of Law graduate worked as a law clerk to the Honorable Julio L. Mendez, assignment judge for Atlantic and Cape May counties, New Jersey Superior Court. She also served as an associate in the Washington, D.C. office of a national law firm.
While attending law school in Atlanta, Logan worked as a legal intern at Grady Memorial Hospital, the Keenan Law Firm and H.J. Russell Construction. At Emory, she served as vice president of community outreach for Emory’s Student Bar Association and director of Intra-School Competitions for the Emory Moot Court Society.
Logan was also a member of the Health Law Society and Black Law Students Association at Emory.
“I always knew I wanted to be an attorney,” Logan said. “My mother says I always enjoyed arguing on behalf of others. I don’t know if growing up watching ‘Law and Order’ had anything to do with that, but I always felt prepared to defend my argument.
Attending HBCU ‘Non-Negotiable’
“A bit of a cultural shell shock, I have to admit. However, I met some of my closest friends at Emory. I also think about the few professors I had who were pivotal in my education. Emory taught me to be resourceful. It was at Emory where I developed my leadership skills and public speaking skills,” she continued.
Logan earned her bachelor’s degree from the venerable HBCU Hampton University in Virginia. She said attending a HBCU as an undergrad was “non-negotiable.”
“It was important for me to attend a historically black college,” Logan said. “I chose to attend Hampton University after a college tour. I was enamored by the seriousness of the studies and the close proximity to the water, appropriately called ‘Our Home By The Sea.’ The experience of being surrounded by young adults who look like me all trying to achieve greatness in our respective areas was an unforgettable experience.”
Making Impact with Atlantic City NAACP
With the Atlantic City NAACP, Logan serves as chair of the branch’s education committee and environmental justice committee.
“It was actually a co-worker who suggested I get involved with the NAACP/AC branch,” Logan said. “Heâ€™s been an active supporter of the NAACP for some time and thought I would be a great addition. I got involved and went full steam ahead since then.
“As part of my role with the education committee, one of my priorities is to further develop our scholarship program. Last year, we awarded six scholarships each in the amount of $1,250. This year I’m looking to award six scholarships in the amount of $2,500,” she said.
Logan said as the environmental justice committee chair, the NAACP will host two panel discussions.
“The first will focus on energy and the second panel discussion will focus on food, water, and health,” Logan said. “The objective of the panel is to educate community members and business stakeholders in the Atlantic City area. Environmental justice is a shared responsibility and Iâ€™m excited to be a part of this initiative.”
Kaleem Shabazz, a member of the Atlantic City council and president of the NAACP, praised Logan for her contributions.
“Ciera has brought energy, enthusiasm and focus to our branch,” Shabazz said. “Her work on the scholarship committee has greatly increased our scholarship output. Her work on our environmental justice committee is going to be equally important. Ciera is a rising star.”
Participating in NAACP’s NextGen Program
Logan is now involved in the NAACP’s nationwide NextGen program, a leadership training program created to help mold the next generation of civil rights leaders.
“The NextGen program is invaluable,” Logan said. “NextGen is a 12-month leadership training program. It creates a safe space to discuss social justice issues and appropriate ways to address those issues.
“We learn how to be effective leaders in our local branches and challenge each other to think critically about issues surrounding civil rights. I’ve met some incredible people in the program that I’m confident will be lifelong friends,” Logan added.
Logan to Young People: Seek Information
As a young role model, Logan was asked what advice she could give young African-Americans.
“If I could offer some advice â€“ be creative in obtaining information,” she said. “Don’t just wait for people to go out of their way to share information with you. Affirmatively seek information on your own. Expand your network and regularly call on your network for advice and information. Enter new spaces and determine where you best fit. Once you find it, get creative in your role and find your niche.”
Logan counts her own mother as her inspiration and praised her family.
“My mother is definitely my inspiration,” Logan said. “She’s direct, she’s a phenomenal mother, daughter, wife, sister, and friend. I admire her patience, her unwavering faith in God, and her ability to always have a ready word.
“She’s also an incredible singer. I have a younger sister who is currently in graduate school studying human resources,” Logan said.
With the help of family, Logan is proving to be one of Atlantic City’s persons to watch in the future.
Photo Courtesy of Ciera Logan
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