Superior Court Judge to speak at Livingstone’s Founders Day event

Superior Court Judge to speak at Livingstone’s Founders Day event
February 01
09:04 2018

SALISBURY – Each year during Black History Month, Livingstone College pays homage to its roots by honoring its founder, Dr. Joseph Charles Price, who was born in February.

This year, college officials have developed an exciting program for the 139th celebration of Founder’s Day, which will be held on Thursday, Feb. 8, at 10 a.m. at Varick Auditorium.

The keynote speaker will be Livingstone alumnus Judge J. Carlton “J.C.” Cole, a superior court judge for the First District Superior Court, which includes Camden, Chowan, Currituk, Dare, Gates, Pasquotank, and Perquimans counties in North Carolina.

A Hertford resident, Cole, a veteran district court judge for the First Judicial District, was appointed to the Superior Court in 2009 by Gov. Beverly Perdue. He was re-elected in 2010 to serve an eight-year term.

Having earned his undergraduate degree from Livingstone College, he received his master’s degree in criminal justice from North Carolina Central University and his J.D. from the North Carolina Central University School of Law.

Known for his signature bow ties and cowboy boots, Cole often talks to young defendants about their education and future, sometimes offering them a second chance, which is in line with the tenets of Livingstone College.

“I have an obligation and responsibility to help people who come to court. I was placed there – almost by divine intervention, because my life was not such that I should be on that bench,” he said in a previous interview.

Cole said he is facts-driven when it comes to his judicial philosophy. “If the facts strike me in a New Testament way, deserving mercy, that’s what I do. But if they strike me in an Old Testament way – nothing but justice, an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth – that’s what I do.”

Livingstone College was founded as Zion Wesley Institute in 1879 by a group of A.M.E. Zion ministers for the purpose of training ministers in Concord. After three brief sessions, directed by principals Bishop C. R. Harris and professor A.S. Richardson, the institute ultimately closed. In 1881, Dr. Joseph Charles Price and Bishop J. W. Hood changed their roles as delegates to the Ecumenical Conference and became fundraisers with the mission to re-establish Zion Wesley Institute.

The Rowan County town of Salisbury gave the trustees a generous donation of $1,000 and an invitation to relocate the school in Salisbury. They accepted both gifts, and the college reopened in Salisbury in 1882 with Dr. Price as president. He was born Feb. 10, 1854, in Elizabeth City, the same birthplace of current president, Dr. Jimmy R. Jenkins, Sr.

“I am honored to serve and lead this hallowed institution, and to follow the footsteps of Dr. Price. He was a remarkable man, exceptional educational leader, advocate for justice and peace, and an extraordinary voice of faith and moral courage,” Jenkins said.

The public is invited.

About Livingstone College

Livingstone College, founded and supported by the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, is a private historically black institution located in Salisbury, N.C. Through a Christian-based environment suitable for learning, it provides excellent liberal arts and religious education programs for students from all ethnic backgrounds designed to develop their potential for leadership and service to a global community. For more information, visit

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