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Hailing from Fayette County, TN, The Stotts family has produced some of the most iconic figures in government, 1st Black Fire Chief of Memphis Fire Department, Carl Stotts, and his daughter, Shelby County Circuit Court Judge Rita Stotts. Her father, William Oliver Pearson, was an Aeronautical Engineer who designed Boeing 757’s. Her mother, Emma Jean Stotts Pearson, was an educator for over 44 years in the Memphis City School District. Her grandmother, Fania Davis Pearson, sat on the Board of Directors at UCLA in California, and Angela Davis, Civil Rights Activist is her 1st cousin. The family established (Edenton Farms), which spans over 134 years, and the Philadelphia Baptist Church located in Fayette County, TN. Erika Stotts Pearson has risen to the forefront of Memphis politics. She attended East High School where she graduated in 1988 and received Presidential scholarships to several schools across the country.
Erika has obtained multiple degrees in Economics, Finance, and Engineering as well as a Master of Science in Sport and Leisure Commerce at the University of Memphis/the University of Massachusetts. She was also one of the first women in this area to manage a Professional Women’s Basketball Association’s team, the Memphis Blues, as Assistant General Manager. Securing championships’ with the National Conference Team in 1995, she worked with the many local partners in Memphis to secure the Canadian Football League, the Memphis Maddogs, as well as the NBA Now group to secure the Memphis Grizzlies franchise in Memphis. Under the tutelage of Reggie Williams, she would go on to serve in the administration of the Memphis Redbirds Triple-A Baseball Team. As one of the few female Black sports agents/marketers, she would work with MidSouth Sports, Duncan Williams, Jay Laney, Stanley Morgan, New England Patriots Wide Receiver, and Attorney Allen Wade.
Later, she would meet and marry Rev. Derrick Joyce, the President of the 100 Black Men of Memphis, where the two founded in partnership with the organization Memphis Academy of Health Sciences Charter School. The very first Charter school in the State of Tennessee and the City of Memphis in 2005. She is very active in education with her last year’s serving as Math Department Chair at Shelby County School’s Millington High School 2009-2010 school year. Currently, she operates OpesDei Home Health Solutions and Precision Energy Logistics.
Organizations that she has been involved within her recent years include SCLC, BAEO, NAACP, Board Member National Foundation Transplants’, Partner 100 Black Men of Memphis, Kidz Biz, Partner Campaign for School Equity, Tennessee Pastors’ Action Coalition, Leadership Memphis, NEA, SCEA, and MEA. She currently serves on a White House Bipartisan taskforce for strategic partnership and African American outreach with special assistant to the President, Nicole A. Frazier. Recently, she was recognized with Congressional recognition and Shelby County Board of Commissioner’s recognition for her endeavors to ensure that all young people receive a quality education.