Board of Supervisors

Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson

10th District Supervisor

Represented County Supervisory District 5 prior to decennial redistricting

Dear Neighbors,

Thank you for electing me to serve as your Milwaukee County Supervisor for a fourth term. Since I was first elected in April 2016, I have made it my mission to amplify the voices and concerns of my constituents. As your representative, I value and enjoy meeting personally with neighbors, community groups, local organizations, and businesses who are working to build a better community. You are the reason I'm here.

I am honored that my County Board colleagues unanimously re-elected me as their Chairwoman for the 2022-24 term. Milwaukee County continues to face many challenges. We're managing a revenue crisis that has forced us to cut about $30 million from the County Budget each year. We've declared racism a public health crisis and launched a strategic plan to achieve racial equity and become the healthiest county in Wisconsin. We're still confronting a second health care crisis with the COVID-19. These challenges call for intentional leadership and ongoing public engagement. Please don't hesitate to contact me with your thoughts or concerns about these and other issues.

In addition to my responsibilities as Chairwoman, I continue to serve on the boards of the Milwaukee Art Museum, Wisconsin Counties Association, Clean Wisconsin, and the UW-Extension Board of Visitors. I also serve on the Board of Directors for Local Progress, a national network that supports, connects, and unites progressive local elected officials and allied organizations.

As Chairwoman, I will continue to advocate for progressive legislation and work with you to make our community a better place to live, work, and play. If you have ideas for new policies or how to collaborate with the community to advance our shared values, please let me know!

Staying connected with you is important to me. Please share any news of noteworthy events in your neighborhood or community, or events and projects that involve an organization to which you belong.

I look forward to hearing from you!

How to Contact Me

Email me

Call my office at (414) 278-4261


Connect With Chairwoman Nicholson

Chairwoman Nicholson welcomes the opportunity to hear from you. To receive advance notice of the Chairwoman’s upcoming events, please fill out the form below so that we can verify you are a Milwaukee County resident. This information is essential to ensuring the security of the event.

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Chats With the Chairwoman

Previous Chats

Wednesday, June 16, 2021
"Celebrating Black Activism"

With special guests: 

  • Tracey Corder, Deputy Campaign Director, Action Center on Race and the Economy
  • Tia Richardson, Community Mural Artist
  • Mariah Smith, Community Organizer, The Peoples Revolution
  • Reggie Jackson, Co-Founder & Lead Trainer/Consultant, Nurturing Diversity Partners 

    Watch the archived video here

Thursday, March 25, 2021
"Black Women Discuss Racism, Colorism and Erasure"

With special guests: 

  • LaTonya Johnson, Wisconsin State Senator (District 6)
  • Shavonda Sisson, Program Director of Ally and Alumni Experience, Public Allies Milwaukee
  • Elle Halo, LGBTQIA/QTPOC Health Equity Advocate/Educator, Planned Parenthood of WI Inclusion Health Program Specialist

Watch the archived video here.

Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020
"The Unique Challenges of Being a Black Leader" 

  • Angela Lang, Black Leaders Organizing Communities
  • Wes Bellamy, Author and former Vice Mayor of Charlottesville, NC
  • Wanda Montgomery, President, Village of Brown Deer
  • David Bowen, WI State Representative (District 10)
  • Vaun Mayes, Community Task Force, Milwaukee
  • Arnitta Holliman, Office of Violence Prevention, City of Milwaukee Health Department

    Watch the archived video here

Map of the 10th Supervisory District

(click to view full size)

About Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson

Marcelia Nicholson is an award-winning activist, and the first Black woman and Latina elected as Chairwoman of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors. Prior to her election as Board Chair, she served as 1st Vice Chair of the Board and Chair of the Economic & Community Development and Intergovernmental Relations committees. She sits on the board of directors of several community and national organizations, including Local Progress, the Milwaukee Art Museum, Wisconsin Counties Association, Clean Wisconsin, Southeastern Wisconsin Planning Commission, and the UW-Extension Board of Visitors.

Born and raised in Milwaukee, Chairwoman Nicholson works to make opportunities that were given to her as a young woman growing up in 53206—one of the nation’s poorest and most incarcerated ZIP codes—available to others. Chairwoman Nicholson is a champion for working people, public education, economic development, and community empowerment. Her past work as a union activist, community organizer, and educator informs her policy and community work. She has authored and sponsored several significant pieces of legislation, including a $15 living wage ordinance, an eviction reduction program, a resolution establishing Juneteenth Day as a major holiday, and a declaration of racism as a public health crisis (Milwaukee County was the first county or municipality in the United States to do so). She has also secured funding for County parks, advocated on behalf of women of color seeking entrepreneurship, and fought for criminal justice reform.

Chairwoman Nicholson is a proud product of Milwaukee Public Schools and is an honors graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Prior to her first election to the Board of Supervisors in 2016, she taught 4th grade at Milwaukee Public Schools. As a member of the Milwaukee Teachers Education Association (MTEA), she worked to organize MTEA members and community groups for better teaching and classroom conditions. She earned recognition for her activism and dedication to Social Justice Unionism with a feature profile and cover story in the Fall 2016 edition of the National Education Association magazine.

Chairwoman Nicholson is also the Director of Civic Engagement and Independent Political Power at the Center for Popular Democracy. In her spare time, Marcelia serves as a national trainer for the Progressive Governance Academy, where she trains progressive elected officials across the country on various skills, including transitioning to public leadership and setting an agenda. She also has a passion for baking and owns her own business baking cookies, cakes, and sweets.

Notable accomplishments and recognitions:

  • Milwaukee Business Journal 40 Under 40 (2022
  • Milwaukee Business Journal “Power Broker” (2020 and 2021)
  • Milwaukee Democratic Party Rising Star Award (2020)
  • Panelist, Democratic National Convention, Milwaukee (2020)
  • Young Elected Officials Inaugural 35 under 35 (2020)
  • Downtown Milwaukee Downtown Playmaker Award (2019)
  • Young Elected Officials Inaugural Trailblazer Award (2018)
  • Panelist, Congressional Black Caucus Annual Legislative Conference (2018)
  • Local Progress National Board Member (2017)
  • National Working Families Party Academy Delegate to Madrid, Spain (2017)
  • Center for Popular Democracy Elected Representative to World Transformed Festival in Brighton, England (2019)
  • Panelist, Democratic National Convention, Philadelphia (2016)
  • National Education Association (NEA) 30 Under 30 (2016)
  • NEA Magazine Cover Story (Fall 2016)

All press release, newsletter and in the news content dated prior to April 18, 2022, reflects Chairwoman Nicholson representing County Supervisory District 5 prior to decennial Milwaukee County redistricting.

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Press Releases

Board of Supervisors Adopt 2023 Milwaukee County Budget


Last night the Board of Supervisors adopted [15-3] the 2023 Milwaukee County Budget. Adopted budget amendments avoided cuts to paratransit service and made substantial investments in the county park system.

Nicholson, Martinez Proposal to Advance Multilingual Accessibility for County Meetings Unanimously Recommended for Adoption


Today the Finance Committee unanimously recommended for adoption a budget amendment from Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson and Supervisor Juan Miguel Martinez to offer translation services—including multilingual captioning, meeting notices, and agendas – for County Board and committee meetings.

Chairwoman Nicholson and Supervisor Martin Commend Public Participation at Annual Public Hearing


On Tuesday, November 1, the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors held their annual public hearing on County Executive David Crowley’s 2023 recommended budget. Chairwoman Nicholson and Supervisor Martin released the following statements following the meeting.

Finance Committee Unanimously Recommends Nicholson, Sumner Amendment Funding Paratransit and Parks


Today the County Board’s Finance Committee unanimously recommended for adoption an amendment authored by Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson and Supervisor Liz Sumner.

First Annual Harvest Fest Draws Hundreds to Sherman Park


On Saturday, October 29 hundreds of Milwaukee area residents came together for the inaugural Sherman Park Harvest Fest organized by County Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson.

Chairwoman Nicholson Statement on Wisconsin Policy Forum Budget Brief


Today the Wisconsin Policy Forum published its summary analysis of the 2023 Milwaukee County Recommended Budget. Chairwoman Nicholson released the following statement.

Chairwoman Nicholson Applauds New Olmsted Way in Washington Park


Yesterday county officials unveiled signage for the recently renamed “Olmsted Way” through Washington Park. The parkway was renamed through a resolution sponsored by County Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson.

Chairwoman Nicholson Leads Initiative to Modernize County Board Room


Today Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson announced the completion of new technology in the Milwaukee County Board Room which allows the Board to conduct hybrid meetings and increase accessibility for Milwaukee County residents.

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In The News

JS Online: Milwaukee's Black Nite Tavern Set To Become The First LGBTQ Landmark In County History


For the first time in Milwaukee County history there will be a LGBTQ official landmark. And that landmark will belong to the old Black Nite tavern, home to Wisconsin's LGBTQ uprising.

WPR: Milwaukee County Board Chair Talks Local Issues


In April, Marcelia Nicholson was elected to a fourth term as a Milwaukee County Supervisor. We talk with her about the latest ​​challenges facing the county, including racial equity and budget cuts.

Milwaukee Independent: A Day In Photos With The Chairwoman Of The County Board


Considering herself to be an educator at heart, Marcelia Nicholson made the tough decision to leave her career as a teacher in response to her community’s lack of fair representation. To become an elected official was her best chance to try fixing what she saw as a broken system.

WUWM 89.7: Marcus Center For The Performing Arts Participates In New BIPOC Executive Leadership In The Arts Program


This spring, Marcus Performing Arts Center president and CEO Kendra Whitlock Ingram helped launch the BIPOC Executive Leadership in the Arts Program.

Urban Milwaukee: Vote Could Send More Youth to Lincoln Hills


A vote by the Milwaukee County Board Thursday could end up sending more children to the troubled state-run youth prisons at Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake.

WISN: Counties Tackle Diversity, Inclusion


Milwaukee County Board chairwoman on recent meetings, push to increase funding.

Urban Milwaukee: Johnsons Park To Be Renamed


The Milwaukee County Board’s Finance Committee approved changing the name of Johnsons Park, or rather, completing the name. The committee recommended approval of a proposal from Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson that would change the name from Johnsons Park to Clarence and Cleopatra Johnson Park.

WPR: Milwaukee County Transit System Sees Increase in Ridership, But Numbers Still Lag Behind Pre-Pandemic Levels


The Milwaukee County Transit System is seeing an increase in ridership this year compared to last, but numbers are still not as high as they were before the COVID-19 pandemic. As of this week, the transit system will have given nearly 1.1 million more rides than this time last year, for a total of 8.5 million.

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