In the news: Joseph D. Feaster Jr. Esq.
William James College, a leader in mental health education, awarded Joseph D. Feaster, Jr. Esq, the Doctor of Humane Letters, which is the highest degree that an academic institution can bestow. Feaster became a mental health champion after the tragic loss of his son by suicide. He served as the 2022 Commencement Speaker for William James College on June 12, 2022 at the Boston Park Plaza. President Nicholas Covino, who is committed to training professionals to meet the mental health needs of the unserved and underserved, invited Feaster to speak about the impact of mental illness on families and communities. Covino shared at Commencement, “I am always impressed that the people who we honor here are “regular people” who have decided that they will invest in healing the world rather than enriching themselves. Joseph D. Feaster, Jr. is a leader in reducing the stigma of mental illness and has brought great comfort to those who have lost someone close to them.” Feaster later shared with the graduates, “As I look out at each of you, I know you understand and appreciate my and my family’s pain, and you have committed yourselves to be present and ready to assist the next Joseph Dupont Feaster III and the next Feaster Family.”
Feaster, a practicing attorney for 45 years, has numerous professional and public service affiliations, past and present, including roles with the city governments of Boston and Stoughton; service to the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, the Boston Housing Authority, and the Commonwealth’s Executive Office of Administration and Finance; board membership for mental health organizations and community health centers; and leadership roles with the Boston Chapter of the NAACP, the Massachusetts AARP, and the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers (MLCHC).
Advancing mental health and social justice are central to Feaster’s personal and professional life. Feaster serves as an executive committee member of the Massachusetts Association for Mental Health, Inc., co-chair of the My Brother’s Keeper Boston Advisory Board, and he previously served as a board member of the National Alliance of Mental Illness of Boston (NAMI Boston).
Presently, Feaster is of-counsel at the law firm of Dain, Torpy, Le Ray, Wiest & Garner, P.C. and is the court-appointed Receiver for Roxbury Comprehensive Community Health Center.