Attorney Linda Edwards, service is in her DNA
By Dorothy Inman-Johnson
Special to the Outlook
Linda Edwards is a Tennessee native who moved to Tallahassee about 25 years ago to attend the Florida State University College of Law. She was born in Stanton, Tennessee into a family of eight children. Her father was a factory worker and her mother was a para-professional in the local school system. Both set a good example for the family through their commitment to their church and service to the community. Within a month of her arrival in Tallahassee, she joined Bethel Missionary Baptist Church and immediately began giving back through her work with church ministries that included serving lunch at the Homeless Shelter and Kearney Center, collecting and delivering donations to the Refuge House, providing gifts to children of incarcerated parents through Angel Tree Ministries, and collecting Christmas dolls for underprivileged children. She, also, served as general counsel for Bethel Towers, and one of the co-chairs for Bethel’s project to build a Habitat House.
She is a highly respected attorney, both locally and statewide, as a partner in the Rumberger Kirk and Caldwell Law Firm that specializes in labor and employment law. Linda is, also, a mediator and arbitrator for employment and commercial cases in the county and the Supreme Court circuits. In addition, she lends her support to the Legal Aid Foundation mobile law program for pro bono legal assistance to low-income residents. Recently, she organized the first meeting of African-American women lawyers in Tallahassee. Other service to her profession includes chairing committees and serving as President of Tallahassee Women Lawyers, regularly volunteering to provide legal advice to non-profit organizations on employment law, and serving as a Resource Champion for the Jim Moran Institute for Non-Profit Executives. She currently chairs the Florida Bar Standing Committee on Judicial Nominating Commission Procedures, responsible for assisting the Governor’s office with training and procedures for the state’s 26 judicial nominating commissions.
With her long list of commitments to her law firm, profession, and church, it is hard to believe she can find the time in a 24 hour day for more volunteer service. But she does. During her tenure as President of Tallahassee Women Lawyers, the group received a Florida Bar Diversity grant used to create a project at Nims Middle School called Girls Where They Are. Linda and TWL used funds to introduce girls to the legal profession and impacts of the law in all three branches of government through visits to the Supreme Court, the Capitol, and the Division of Administrative Hearings. She serves as chair of the Board of Directors of the Inspire Group, a non-profit that operates a foster home for boys. She currently volunteers with the Ronald McDonald House and Second Harvest of the Big Bend, as well as finding time for public service projects with her sorority, the Tallahassee Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta. I get tired just listing her extensive record of service to her profession, church, community, and the State of Florida. She says service is in her DNA. I believe her. She has received well deserved recognitions for her hard work as one of Tallahassee’s 25 Women You Need to Know, and recipient of one of the 2016 Pinnacle Awards from 850 Magazine. Congratulations to Linda Edwards for being named the Capital Outlook Newspaper’s Person of the Week for dedicated service to Tallahassee.
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