The Making and Measure of a Judge: Biography of The Honorable Sammie Chess Jr.

The Making and Measure of a Judge: Biography of The Honorable Sammie Chess Jr.

by Joe L. Webster


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The Making and Measure of a Judge: Biography of The Honorable Sammie Chess Jr. by Joe L. Webster

The Making and Measure of a Judge • Biography of the Honorable Sammie Chess, Jr. is the definitive biography of North Carolina's first African American Superior Court Judge. It is a vivid historical journey of Chess's humble beginning on the dirt floor of a tenant dwelling, in the midst of the Great Depression, in rural South Carolina. Chess's journey continues through the Jim Crow era and the civil rights struggle as a civil rights attorney, and his rise to an outstanding Superior Court judge, Administrative Law judge, mentor and public servant. The book contains many lessons on how one should conduct themselves as lawyers and judges, and more importantly, many lessons on how to live one's life. When asked how he was able to rise above all he had experienced first-hand of the segregated south and set aside any personally biases he might have, without hesitation, Chess responded: "You treat people the way you want to be treated, not the way you are treated. I didn't let them set my standards. If a Klan member can bring you to his level, then you are not well rooted." Chess lived by a moral compass that lead him to dispense equal justice under law for all, irrespective of race or any other status in life. Undoubtedly, Chess reminds all of us of one of the greatest lessons one can learn in life: "With perseverance we can achieve."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781597151535
Publisher: The Chapel Hil Press, Inc.
Publication date: 02/06/2017
Pages: 218
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.46(d)

About the Author

Joe L. Webster, born in 1954, grew up alongside five brothers and two sisters in the Goodwill community outside Madison, Rockingham County, North Carolina. There he learned the values of hard work and perseverance on the family tobacco farm and in the textile mills. After completing high school, Joe attended Howard University, where he received his undergraduate degree in 1976 and law school degree in 1979. Recognizing education as a life-long endeavor, Joe was admitted to the L.L.M. Program for Judges at Duke University School of Law, and graduated from the program in May 2016. As the first African American lawyer in his hometown's history, Joe set out to have an impact on his community, his state, and the nation. Much recognition soon followed for his great contributions to the local, regional, and global communities. In addition to his private practice, and his service as a State Administrative Law judge and United States Magistrate judge, he also served as chairman of the North Carolina Board of Law Examiners and adjunct professor of law at the Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law at Campbell University. His judicial philosophy has been one of adhering closely to the principle of "equal justice under law" and "dispensing justice while offering hope." Webster also accepted his calling as a minister in 1998 and was ordained in 2001. Chief among his calling is that of an encourager of all people to persevere through the storms of life. Webster credits his faith in God and family for his career success. "I have sought to live out a purpose-filled life and faith in a manner that would not bring shame upon myself, family, or profession." For over thirty-six years he has been married to Diane Ramsey Webster. They are the proud parents of three children.

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