Michael was born in Kentucky, lived in Seattle, Washington and Montgomery, Alabama before moving to Oakland in 1947. That was a brief stay, and the family worked its way to San Francisco, Menlo Park and ultimately to San Jose. From there, he came to Berkeley for college and marriage, then after graduation with a Bachelors in Architecture, went to London and Stockholm for early work in architecture. Finally, in 1965, he and his wife and two sons came back to the Bay Area, and then moved to Oakland (again!), where they’ve stayed for 50 years.
Always willing to try new things and be pioneers, the Colemans lived in the Acorn housing development in West Oakland for three years, then in the Trestle Glen neighborhood for 28 years, and finally helped develop and then moved into a co-housing condominium in the old Swan’s Market in the center of town.
Michael has been the President of the local American Institute of Architects (AIA) chapter, and has been involved in civic projects for many years. He was on the Oakland Planning Commission for three years, is currently involved in the Committee on Aging with the AIA, a participant in the “At Home With Growing Older” organization (An Interdisciplinary Inquiry On Aging), and is involved in the North Oakland Village, an organization to help seniors stay in their own homes as they age.