Herman Morris selected as City Attorney - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Herman Morris selected as City Attorney during contentious meeting

By Kontji Anthony - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Former MLGW President Herman Morris is expected to be sworn in as Memphis' next City Attorney after a contentious City Council meeting Tuesday, A C Wharton's first as Mayor-elect.

Memphis Mayor Pro Tem Myron Lowery made the pitch to appoint Morris as the new City Attorney.  But the nomination didn't bode well with City Councilman Joe Brown, who didn't appreciate Lowery's repeated attempts to oust former City Attorney Elbert Jefferson, including having police escort Jefferson from city hall.

"This is the doing of the Mayor Pro Tem," Brown said.

Council Chairman Harold Collins quickly stepped in.
"Let me fix this right now," he said. "Is this your nominee Mayor Wharton?"

"One hundred percent," Wharton replied.

Wharton could not make the nomination himself because he won't be sworn in until next week, but he said he had to move fast with Jefferson's resignation and news that Deputy City Attorney Veronica Coleman-Davis leaves Friday.

"Which would have left the city of Memphis without a city attorney," he said.

Collins called the new nominee, who was out of town, to tell him the news.  Morris said he would withdraw his name from the mayor's transition team so he does not double-up in power.

"You're going to be sworn in tomorrow," Collins told him.

Wharton said he chose Morris because he wants someone who knows law, but can also manage 68 employees and tax dollars.

Wharton Transition Team Changes made Tuesday:

  • Withdrawn: Herman Morris
  • Withdrawn: Jim Strickland
  • Added: Howard Richardson, Union and Democratic Party leader
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