In a September 2005 Special Election, Cherelle L. Parker made history by becoming the youngest African-American woman ever elected to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives (PAHR). As State Representative for the 200th Legislative District, she represents approximately 60,000 residents in the Mount Airy, Chestnut Hill, Roxborough and Andorra sections of northwest Philadelphia.
Representative Parker has earned a reputation for being one of the most results-oriented, politically savvy, and proactive legislators in the tri-state region. She is recognized for her strong organizational, strategic planning, and oratorical skills. With this aptitude, she was elected by her Philadelphia colleagues to serve as Chair of the Philadelphia Delegation in the PAHR. Rep. Parker has also successfully secured membership on the powerful House Appropriations Committee, Labor & Industry, Professional Licensure, Rules, Transportation – Democratic Chair – Subcommittee on Public Transportation, and Professional Licensure Committees. In 2013, she was also appointed Vice Chair/Democratic Chair of the PAHR Select Committee on School Safety.
Representative Parker is dedicated to effectively using her voice to advocate for the passage of progressive public policies that will enhance the quality of life for the middle class, senior citizens, women, children and families alike while promoting job creation & sustainability, economic development and consumer protection laws. She is a highly sought after public speaker known for her "straight-forward" approach in communicating with the public.
In the fall of 2009, Representative Parker was selected to join the prestigious Eisenhower Fellowships (EF), of which retired Gen. Colin Powell serves as Chairman. In 2010, as part of the EF’s "Women in Leadership" program, Representative Parker traveled to Argentina and Chile to work with and learn from women in the South American political system. She focused on the following areas: understanding how elected officials use public policy to improve the quality of life for their constituency; learning how officials stabilize their communities by bridging the gap between the “haves” and the “have-nots”; and studying how public officials utilize scarce government resources to economically sustain their communities.
Representative Parker's educational achievements are as follows:
- Masters of Public Administration, University of Pennsylvania, (2014-Present)
- Honorary Doctorate of Divinity, Lutheran Theological Seminary, (2009)
- Certificate of Completion, Senior Executives in State and Local Government, Executive Education, Harvard University ~ Kennedy School of Government, (2008)
- Certificate of Completion, Leadership Philadelphia, (2008)
- Delegate to Australia, American Council of Young Political Leaders (ACYPL), (2006)
- Executive Education Certificate, University of Virginia ~ Darden School of Business Emerging Political Leaders Program, (2006)
- Bachelor of Science Degree, English Education, Lincoln University, Oxford, PA, (1994)
- Certification, Teacher of English, New Jersey Department of Education, (1994);
Representative Parker is a wife and mother residing in the Mt. Airy section of Philadelphia. She enjoys reading, traveling, cooking and spending time with family and friends during her leisure. She holds membership in a plethora of service oriented organizations, boards and commissions also working to improve the community at-large.