Local trailblazing judge honored by Dominion, Library of Virginia at award ceremony

Staff writer

Judge and James City County businessman William T. Stone was among seven honorees recently recognized at the annual Strong Men and Women in Virginia History awards.

The awards program, now in its seventh year and held by Dominion Energy and the Library of Virginia, honors prominent African Americans who have made notable contributions to the state, nation and their professions, according to a Dominion Energy news release.

"The life stories and accomplishments of the men and women honored this year are powerful and inspirational, and it is wonderful to have this opportunity to share their contributions with a wide audience," Librarian of Virginia Sandra G. Treadway said in the release.

The ceremony was held Feb. 7 at the Richmond Marriott.

Stone, who died at age 87 in January 2018, is believed to have been the first black judge in Virginia. Stone was also the owner of Whiting’s Funeral Home and Cremation Services, which still operates on Pocahontas Trail in southeastern James City County.

In October, the section of Pocahontas Trail between Route 199 and the county’s border with Williamsburg was dedicated in Stone’s honor as Judge William T. Stone Memorial Highway.

“We’re doing our best to carry on what that great man started,” Christopher Stone said of his father at the dedication ceremony. “My dad was a stern believer, he was a stern follower. If the Good Book said it, that’s what the good Judge Stone did.”

The honorees are:

  • Kwame Alexander: Writer and youth advocate, Fairfax County.
  • Lawrence A. Davies: Minister and civic leader, Fredericksburg.
  • Fannie W. Fitzgerald: educator and elementary school supervisor, Prince William County.
  • Deanna Reed: Mayor and mentor, Harrisonburg.
  • William T. Stone: Judge and civic leader, Williamsburg.
  • Gladys B. West: Mathematician and educator, King George County.
  • Andrew J. White Sr.: Minister and community activist, Petersburg.

Jack Jacobs, 757-298-6007, jojacobs@vagazette.com, @jajacobs_

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