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The Honorable Wilford Taylor

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Information about The Honorable Wilford Taylor

Profile image of The Honorable Wilford Taylor

Profession

Category:
LawMakers
Occupation(s):
Circuit Court Judge

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Beef
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Maui, Hawaii
Favorite Quote:
Let's Fix It.

Birthplace

Born:
1/15/1950
Birth Location:
Newport News, Virginia

Profession

Category:
LawMakers
Occupation(s):
Circuit Court Judge

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Beef
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Maui, Hawaii
Favorite Quote:
Let's Fix It.

Birthplace

Born:
1/15/1950
Birth Location:
Newport News
See how The Honorable Wilford Taylor is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Wilford Taylor, Jr. was born on January 15, 1950 in Newport News, Virginia. His mother was a homemaker and later a teacher and his father was a mail carrier and chef. He grew up in Hampton, Virginia's Aberdeen community, which is now a historic landmark in the city. In 1968, Taylor was part of the first group of African Americans to integrate Hampton High School. While at Hampton High, he was a member of the football, baseball, track and tennis teams and the thespian club. He earned his high school diploma in 1968.

Taylor then attended Hampton Institute, where he earned his B.S. degree in business management in 1972. Following his graduation, he served in the United States army for the next three years, while earning his master's of commerce degree from the University of Richmond in 1975. In 1978, Taylor earned his law degree from the College of William and Mary. He started a law firm with good friend and attorney Bobby Scott, who is now a Congressman. In 1981, the firm merged with another firm and became Scott, Coles, Brown, Taylor and Melvin. From 1983 until 1985, Taylor worked as the Deputy City Attorney for Hampton. In 1985, Taylor made history, becoming Hampton's first full time African American judge. He served as a judge in the General District Court until 1995, when he was appointed to the Circuit Court, a position he holds today.

Taylor is an adjunct professor at his alma mater, teaching trial advocacy and therapeutic jurisprudence. He is a member of numerous organizations including the American Judges Association, Virginia State Bar Association and Lawyers Helping Lawyers Committee.

He and his wife, Linda, reside in Hampton and have two grown children.

See how The Honorable Wilford Taylor is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable Wilford Taylor's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his mother's educational opportunities and personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his father's background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his father's employment
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about how his parents met
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his father's work ethic
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his maternal ancestry
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his summer activities
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his paternal grandparents
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes Aberdeen Gardens, his childhood neighborhood in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 1 Story: 14 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor recalls holidays during his childhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 15 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about the focus of his childhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 16 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his childhood activities
  • Tape: 1 Story: 17 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor lists his siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 18 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes the sights, sounds and smells of growing up in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 1 Story: 19 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor reflects upon his childhood experiences
  • Tape: 1 Story: 20 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor recalls memorable elementary school teachers
  • Tape: 1 Story: 21 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his childhood temperament
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about the importance of education for his family
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about attending church in Hampton, Virginia as a child
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his junior high school experiences in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his aspiration to be an airline pilot
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about attending Hampton High School in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor recalls racist incidents at Hampton High School in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor reflects upon his experiences with racism while growing up in the South during the Civil Rights Movement
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his favorite high school subjects and activities
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his long-lasting high school friendships
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor remembers visiting Broadway in New York, New York during high school to see 'Man of La Mancha'
  • Tape: 2 Story: 11 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his high school's response to Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination
  • Tape: 2 Story: 12 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor explains his decision to attend Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 13 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his impression of Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 14 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his membership in Groove Phi Groove at Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 15 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his experiences as an intern for Johnson & Johnson in New Brunswick, New Jersey
  • Tape: 2 Story: 16 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his favorite classes and professor at Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 17 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about directing the Hampton University Drug Education Program
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his experiences as a U.S. Army instructor at Fort Lee, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor explains his change of interest from flying airplanes to investment banking
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes how he met his wife, Linda Taylor
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about leaving his position in the U.S. Army at Fort Lee, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his decision to attend William & Mary Law School in Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor reflects upon his experiences at William & Mary Law School in Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about the grading system at William & Mary Law School in Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his favorite constitutional law professor at William & Mary Law School in Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes the academic rigor of William & Mary Law School in Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about beginning a law practice with his friend Bobby Scott in the late 1970s
  • Tape: 3 Story: 11 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his responsibilities in his federal litigation practice
  • Tape: 3 Story: 12 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about the merger of Scott and Taylor with Stewart, Brown and Jones in 1981
  • Tape: 3 Story: 13 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor explains how he became deputy city attorney in 1983 for Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 14 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about white city employees' responses to his role as deputy city attorney for Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 15 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his family's reaction to his employment as an attorney in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 16 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor explains the purview of a general district court in Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 17 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about becoming the first African American appointed to full-time judgeship in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 18 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes the lobbying process to be appointed general district court judge in the State of Virginia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 19 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor reflects upon his judgeship appointment to the Hampton General District Court in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about the types of cases he tried as judge for the Hampton General District Court in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor explains how he handled cases when he knew the people involved
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes his first day on the bench in the general district court in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor explains the differences between a circuit court and general district court in Virginia
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about challenging circuit court cases and decisions
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor reflects upon various perceptions of his conduct as a judge
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor shares his views on the media's role in enlightening the general population about court proceedings
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his perspective on juries
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes the types of cases typically brought before the Hampton Circuit Court in Hampton, Virginia
  • Tape: 4 Story: 10 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor talks about his perspective on sentencing guidelines in the State of Virginia
  • Tape: 4 Story: 11 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor reflects upon his life experiences, pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 12 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor explains why his position as a role model honors those who influenced him
  • Tape: 4 Story: 13 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor shares advice for people interested in pursuing a law career
  • Tape: 4 Story: 14 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor reflects upon his life experiences, pt. 2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 15 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor describes how he would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor narrates his photographs, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor narrates his photographs, pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - The Honorable Wilford Taylor narrates his photographs, pt. 3