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Born in New Hanover County and raised in Pender County, North Carolina, James considers both New Hanover and Pender Counties his home. He graduated from Pender High School, where he served in leadership roles from the President of the JROTC Battalion Commander, Senior class and Student Body including captain and quarterback of the football team. He attended North Carolina Central University on a full football scholarship where he also became co-captain of the football team. He is also a cum laude Bachelors of Arts Degree in Political Science and Jurist Doctor Degree recipient from NCCU and NCCU School of Law, respectively.
Faison served as a staff attorney with Legal Services of the Lower Cape Fear in Wilmington, North Carolina where he specialized in public benefits litigation and representing indigent clients and veterans with disability claims throughout seven counties. He also served as an adjunct professor at Cape Fear Community College, teaching Legal Systems to paralegals students. He later served as Assistant District Attorney for Pender and New Hanover Counties.
Faison was appointed by former Governor James B. Hunt, Jr. to serve as a District Court Judge for Pender and New Hanover Counties which established Judge Faison as the first African American male to become a District Court Judge in the history of the Fifth Judicial District. Following his appointment, Judge Faison has been reelected by the people of New Hanover and Pender Counties for each successive term. As a District Court Judge, he presides over juvenile cases, Family Court, Drug Treatment Court, and DWI Treatment Court. Judge Faison was appointed by former Governor Pat McCrory to serve as Chairman of the Statewide DWI Task Force of North Carolina. Judge Faison also serves as Chairman of the Advisory Committee for Drug Treatment Courts for North Carolina.
Judge Faison has been recognized for his unique ability to effectively communicate with youthful offenders and respected for his judicial temperament. He is described as fair, approachable, and firm. He spends much of his time compassionately focusing and supporting organizations combating the plight of youthful offenders, families in crisis, absentee fathers and battling the devastation caused by the opioid epidemic. Faison serves the youth of our communities as a mentor, motivational speaker, and frequent guest speaker at area schools. As a volunteer, he presides over high school mock trial competitions, teen court sessions, and is an instructor with Street Safe Defensive Driving Program.
As a founding member of the New Hanover County Blue Ribbon Commission on the Prevention of Youth Violence, Judge Faison co-authored the Commission’s Resolution Against Bullying, adopted by the Wilmington City Council, New Hanover County Board of Commissioners and Board of Education, and the Pender County Board of Commissioners and Board of Education. He participates at schools and other public forums to promote anti-violence and anti-bullying initiatives with parents and students. Faison also serves our youth and community as a board member of numerous organizations.
Pastor Faison serves pastor of Byrd’s Chapel Missionary Church, Rose Hill, NC. His pastoral ministry began there in 1998. He serves as the director of the in the Kenansville Eastern Missionary Baptist Association (KEMBA) Youth Council consisting of approximately 49 churches. One of Faison’s most frequently stated expressions to the youth is “Preparation plus opportunity equals success”. Each year, he oversees the KEMBA Youth Activity Day, with as many as 600 youth and adult participants.
Faison has received numerous awards for community service. Faison loves and cherishes his wife of 27+ years, Angela, a retired environmental planner, and their daughter, Christa, an elementary school teacher.