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Judge William Edwards Inducted into the MVHS Hall of Fame

Longtime Mount Vernon City Court Judge, William Edwards, was inducted into the Mount Vernon High School Hall of Fame on Saturday, December 17, 2022.  

Judge Edwards was appointed to the Mount Vernon City Court by Mayor Ernest Davis in 2003, and he was subsequently elected in 2004. His current term was set to expire in 2023, but he passed away on August 28, 2022. His life and accomplishments are now enshrined in the Mount Vernon High School Hall of Fame.  

“Judge Edwards was a true humanitarian,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Waveline Bennett-Conroy in her opening remarks. “So much so, that since his passing, he has left an endowment to the Mount Vernon City School District. It was his wish that the endowment be used to support his alma mater in creating opportunities for scholars, wanting the best for every child.” 

Friends and family of Judge Edwards shared their fondest memories of Judge Edwards at the ceremony.  The Denzel Washington School of the Arts choir and interpretive dancers performed as well. Mount Vernon City Court Judge Peter Davis shared the influence Judge Edwards had on his career. 

“Judge Edwards called himself the teaching judge in Mount Vernon City Court,” said Davis. “And I wouldn’t be standing before you here today as a judge if it weren’t for Judge Edwards. I feel blessed to follow in his footsteps.” 

Judge Edwards, a fierce advocate for his community who was known for his charisma and compassion, was born and raised in Mount Vernon. He made his debut in the Mount Vernon City School District as a student at Graham Elementary School. He then went on to Nichols Junior High School, where he was class president and received the keys to the City of Mount Vernon from Mayor August P. Petrillo.  

In 1975, Judge Edwards graduated from Mount Vernon High School in the top 1 percent of his class and was awarded the Humanitarian Award. He attended Williams College as a Stephen P. Tyng Scholar, which paid for his full four years as an undergrad and a subsequent three years at Columbia University Law School. At Columbia University, he was awarded the NAACP Defense Fund Award. 

Judge Edwards’s career was built on providing justice for the underserved and underprivileged, and he served with his values firmly as the driver of his actions. He turned down a role with the CIA out of law school because he wanted to serve his community and maintain his loyalty to his hometown. Instead, one of his first jobs was with the New York City Department of Housing and Preservation. He worked vigorously to help families secure housing in some of the most challenging times of their lives. As the acting family court judge in White Plains, two of Judge Edwards’ decisions were published in the NY Law Journal.   

Judge Edwards is fondly remembered by his wife, Helena, and their children Jethro, Hillary and Diana.  

“Thank you to the Mount Vernon community at large, from the ground up,” said Helena Edwards, wife of Judge Edwards. “With their thunderous support of my husband, they are the deep roots that held him together. They kept him firmly on the ground when the winds blew and the storms came, they held him up. Thank you. Today Mount Vernon is shining because one of Mount Vernon’s own decided that he was going to commit his life to doing the right thing always.”  

Judge William Edwards made a lifetime commitment to serving his community, and for that he is being recognized in the Mount Vernon Hall of Fame. He stood for justice and equality in life, and he will always be remembered for those values. 

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About AJ Woodson (2407 Articles)
AJ Woodson is the Editor-In-Chief of Black Westchester and Co-Owner of Urban Soul Media Group, the parent company. AJ is a Father, Brother, Author, Writer, Journalism Fellow, Rapper, Radio Personality, Hip-Hop Historian and A Freelance Journalist whose byline has appeared in several print publications and online sites including The Source, Vibe, the Village Voice, Upscale, Sonicnet.com, Launch.com, Rolling Out Newspaper, Spiritual Minded Magazine and several others.
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