Heather McTeer Toney
Heather McTeer Toney was appointed by President Barack Obama as Regional Administrator for the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Southeast Region, headquartered in Atlanta, GA. She also served as the first African-American, first female and at age 27; the youngest to serve as Mayor of Greenville, Mississippi from 2004-2012. Known for her energetic and genuine commitment to people and the law, her work has made her a national figure in public service, diversity and community engagement.
The daughter of a civil rights attorney and public school teacher, Heather was born and raised in Greenville, Mississippi. Throughout her legal career, she has handled a diverse group of cases ranging from employment discrimination to medical malpractice; and was well versed in the corporate political arena. At EPA, Mrs. Toney was responsible for protecting public health and the environment in the eight southeastern states, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Mississippi, South Carolina and Tennessee, as well as six federally recognized tribes. She has particular expertise in environmental law and sustainability.
Heather has served in several roles throughout her career including as the Executive Director of the Center for Excellence in Student Learning at Mississippi Valley State University and an expert with SheSource, a publication of the Women’s Media Center. Heather has worked around the world and is noted for advocating and training diverse officials on leadership in over 15 countries including Kenya, France, Portugal, Nigeria and Senegal.
Heather McTeer Toney has received numerous award and honors. She has appeared on news outlets such as CNN, Fox News, MSNBC and C-Span. She has been featured in the Washington Post, Jet Magazine, Essence Magazine and the Mississippi Business Journal. Heather has been honored as one Atlanta’s “Top 40 under 40” by the Atlanta Business Chronicle (Class of 2015) and one of the National Bar Association’s “Top 40 Lawyers Under 40”. McTeer was featured in the May 2005 issue of Essence Magazine as one of the “50 Most Remarkable Women in the World.” She was featured in the November 2011 issue of Marie Claire magazine as the “Top Politician” in their annual “Women On Top” awards. She was also recognized by Black Entertainment Television (BET) as a “Black Woman In Politics That Rock!”
Ms. Toney earned a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Spelman College in Atlanta. She earned her law degree from the Tulane University School of Law. She is a member of the Mississippi Bar Association, and alumni of the Young Elected Officials Network. She also served as past president of the National Conference of Black Mayors, and as past chair of the EPA Local Government Advisory Committee. She enjoys reading, and is an avid athlete that loves triathlons. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and an active member of New Living Way Christian Fellowship church. She is married to Dexter Toney and they have three children.