Edwards was raised a pastor's daughter, active in church leadership and Sunday School while a teenager. She moved to Birmingham from Columbus, Mississippi to attend UAB and earned a bachelor of arts in communications management and human resources. She is now working on a masters in business administration at Troy University. She was a pre-kindergarten teacher in Tuscaloosa before returning to UAB as a recruiter. She has been active with the NAACP and volunteers with Birmingham City Schools.
Edwards defeated incumbent Odessa Ashley after a run-off in the 2009 election. She was criticized for claiming 10 years' experience in "teaching, youth leadership, promoting education and Christian academics" in her campaign literature.
- "Birmingham Board of Education District 7: Alana V. Edwards" (August 17, 2009) The Birmingham News
- Leech, Marie (October 2, 2009) "Birmingham, Alabama school board district 7 hopefuls Odessa Ashley, Alana Edwards pit experience, youth." The Birmingham News
- Leech, Marie (February 12, 2013) "Birmingham school board member Alana Edwards Haynes to resign today." The Birmingham News
- Alana Edwards at Birmingham City Schools' web site