Virginia (Spivey) Coleman was raised in Louisburg, NC. She studied chemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She was a chemist in the Y-12 Plant during the Manhattan Project, working with uranium yellowcake in the chemical department.
Coleman continued to work at Y-12 for many years, and met her husband Charlie, a physical chemist with a PhD, in the lab there. Virginia’s story is prominently featured in Denise Kiernan’s bestselling book The Girls of Atomic City, published in 2013.