Council Member John Meredith
John Meredith, C.A.E. (Ret.) is the son of civil rights icon James H. Meredith, the first African American to enroll and graduate from the previously segregated University of Mississippi.
John’s first career was as a laboratory technologist. While managing a hospital-based clinical lab in Kansas, John participated in a Washington fly-in as a member of the clinical lab manager’s association to lobby against a bill that would eventually have a profound negative impact on the delivery of services to patients. He found the process fascinating and, after securing a master’s degree a year later, rededicated his professional efforts to government.
He moved to Washington in advance of the 1994 Republican Revolution and quickly gained success navigating sensitive issues through the legislative process on behalf of small and family-owned business owners.
Meredith provided exclusive leadership for a national multi-industry business coalition advocating immigration reform of service sector guest worker programs successful in extending H-2B reform (Public Law #109-364). He also led the green industry’s advocacy effort to expand Daylight Savings Time (Public Law #109-58) on behalf of retail garden centers. Meredith also conceived, organized, expanded and chaired a national multi-industry business coalition advocating immigration reform of service sector guest worker programs successful in enacting H-2B legislation during the 109th Congress (Public Law #109-13).
During his distinguished lobbying career, Meredith was the recipient of two national awards for advocacy – the Legislative Champion Award and the Advancing Arboriculture Award. He has served as a National Co-Chair of Minority Outreach for the Voting Integrity Project (VIP) and Executive Committee member of the National Council of Agricultural Employers (NCAE). At NCAE, he was the Moderator for the 2005 NCAE Immigration Roundtable in Washington, D.C.
Meredith’s political prowess was not limited to enactment of legislation or influence over the promulgation of federal regulations. Throughout his career, he has established himself as a leading advocate on numerous issues among lawmakers, regulators, media outlets, as well as national associations and business communities though coalition advocacy, lecturing nationally in a variety of stakeholder forums, repeatedly serving as a media source, and earned distinction as one of the most influential African American lobbyists in America by the conservative news outlet, Newsmax.
More recently, Meredith wrote a political opinion column for AL.com, which was syndicated in its Huntsville, Birmingham and Mobile newspapers. He was also a political analyst for WHNT News 19 in Huntsville, providing Election Day coverage and issue analysis of ongoing political activities in Washington, Montgomery and North Alabama.
Meredith earned an associate’s degree from Hinds Junior College, a bachelor’s degree from the University of Cincinnati and a master’s degree from Mississippi College. He serves as the Chair of the Madison County American Red Cross Board, Chair of the Drake State Foundation Board and Advisory Board Member of Burritt on the Mountain and the Junior League.
He is married to Tina Palacios.