Joy Taylor kicks off campaign for Chester district justice
CHESTER >> City Director of Constituent Services Joy J. Taylor officially announced her bid for magisterial district judge last week with a Thursday evening campaign launch at the Cultural Arts and Technology Center on West Fourth Street. Taylor will challenge incumbent Dawn L. Vann in the Democratic primary for District Court 32-1-21, covering Chester wards 3 through 7.
“I have spent the last 15 years of my life serving my community through faithbased community outreach, youth development programing, mentoring and currently in city government,” Taylor said at the event, according to a press release.
“Taylor’s diverse background makes her relatable to all,” said campaign manager Nafis Nichols, the city’s chief financial officer, in a prepared statement. “She stands by integrity and is fair. Her innovative work, passion and heart for the community is unmeasurable.”
Taylor, 32, has served as director of Constituent Services since 2012, appointed by former Mayor John Linder and continuing to serve under the administration of current Mayor Thaddeus Kirkland.
She first entered civic life serving as a peer leader with the Crozer-Chester Medical Center’s Wellness Center during high school, mentoring city middle school students on pregnancy and substance abuse prevention and peer pressure. Following high school graduation and completion of the peer mentor program in 2004, Taylor was one of the first recipients of the Crozer-Chester Medical Center Fellowship Program, which allowed her to continue to work with city youth.
“When I was in college, I served as attorney general for the student judiciary,” Taylor said by phone. “We had campus police with arresting powers; students had to go before the student judiciary. That opened my eyes to the critical role judges play in shaping the communities and good citizenry.”
“When I graduated (college) I remember vividly telling my friends and now campaign manager that I was going to run (for district justice),” Taylor said. “I started researching (district justice requirements), then life happens – I got into grad school; I took an opportunity for a position with the city; I started a family. I’m finally at a place where I can pursue that dream.”
Taylor hopes to apply her background in civic engagement to the bench using mediation and diversionary programs where appropriate for first-time offenders.
“I’m a firm believer that district court is where the opportunity for civic engagement and prevention begins,” and available to mediate minor offenses or conflicts before they progress further into the county and state court systems, said Taylor.
Taylor is a graduate of Village Charter School. She holds a B.A. in communication studies from Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina and a master’s degree in urban studies from Eastern University. She is a member of the Tau Delta Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., and a member of Eternal Hope of Glory Church in Chester Township. She is the wife of Chester Police Officer Terrance Taylor and the mother of two young sons.
Joy Taylor announces her big for magisterial district judge in Chester as Mayor Thaddeus Kirkland looks on.