Marcus Coleman serves as the Director for the Department of Homeland Security Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships (DHS Partnerships Center), one of several centers of the White House Office of Faith-Based & Neighborhood Partnerships. Originally from Tucson, Arizona, Marcus has served at the intersection of building public private partnerships with faith-based and non-profit organizations for more than 15 years.
As the Director of the DHS Partnerships Center, Marcus leads a team focused on building partnerships alongside others at FEMA and DHS to advance equity in emergency management and strengths climate resilience, improving the safety and security of the places where people worship, fellowship and serve and provides technical assistance to emergency managers, first responders and national security professionals on engaging faith-based and community organizations across DHS. The office is also an active partner of the DHS Blue Campaign, an effort designed to educate the public, law enforcement and other partners to recognize the indicators of human trafficking, and how to appropriately respond to possible cases.
Marcus began his career at FEMA in 2010, where he was a program manager for the Individual and Community Preparedness Division. There he worked to create partnerships that represented both the public and private sectors which included co-developing FEMA - Emergency Management Institute (EMI) Course | IS-909: Community Preparedness: Implementing Simple Activities for Everyone. In 2013, Marcus transitioned to the DHS Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships serving as Special Assistant to the Director. In 2018 Marcus transitioned to the private sector working at HWC where he supported projects that include marketing flood insurance and providing program management support to the Risk MAP program.
Throughout his time at the DHS Partnerships Center, Coleman supported a number of disaster activations and special mission responses. This including responding to hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, the 2015 influx of unaccompanied children, Hurricane Ida, the Kentucky Severe Storms, Straight-line Winds, Flooding, and Tornadoes, Operation Allies Welcome and leading post-incident national outreach and messaging after several active shooter and active assailant incidents. In 2016, he won a FEMA Administrator’s Award for the work he did to encourage collaboration between faith leaders and first responders to improve the safety and security of places of worship.
Coleman’s contributions to homeland security also include co-developing FEMA’s guidance for Engaging Faith-based and Community Organizations: Planning Considerations for Emergency Managers and contributing to FEMA’s course on Religious and Cultural Literacy and Competency in Disasters and leading the development and implementation of several national memorandums of agreement with organizations serving historically underrepresented communities. He has also written several articles featured in the Crisis Response Journal and has been featured in his current capacity on media outlets including the Better Samaritan Podcast; the Climate Initiative, the Chavis Chronicles, and the Jewish News Syndicate.
Marcus is an alum of Howard University, American University, Harvard University National Preparedness Leadership Initiative and the Obama for America Campaign. Outside of his role at FEMA, Marcus stays active as a proud resident of Washington, DC as an Advisory Board Member for the National Institute of Civic Discourse, Board Member for Fair Chance and an active member of the Truman National Security Project, the Next Generation National Security #NextGenNatSec, and the Diversity in National Security Network and the Vanguard Fellows Program.