Meet the five individuals entering the Columbus Hall of Fame

Local News

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Five people were announced Wednesday as the next class in the Columbus Hall of Fame.

Mayor Andrew Ginther named the class. The hall honors outstanding individuals who, through exemplary accomplishments, have gained recognition for themselves and have brought credit to this city.

“We are delighted to induct these five Columbus champions into the Columbus Hall of Fame,” Ginther said. “Each of them has contributed to the well-being, growth, and diversity of our city. I cannot thank them enough for lifting up the City of Columbus and its residents.”

Here are the city-provided biographies on the five inductees:

Golda M. Edmonston was a member of the Ohio House of Representatives for five terms in the 1940s and 1950s. She was an outspoken advocate of women in the workplace, particularly in government, and proposed legislation that would ensure women equal pay for equal work multiple times throughout her tenure. Edmonston also served on Columbus City Council from 1959 to 1967, becoming the first female president of the Columbus City Council in November 1962 at the age of 74.

Reverend Leon Troy Sr. serves as pastor emeritus of Second Baptist Church, the oldest Black Baptist church in Columbus, Ohio. In 1996, he became pastor of Second Baptist Church, where he served for the next 20 years until he retired. In 1983, he was appointed by Mayor Rinehart to be a Special Assistant to the Mayor on Community Affairs. He served as the first Black Fire Chaplain for the City of Columbus and received the Governor’s Award in 1974 for Community Actions by former Ohio Governor John L. Gilligan. With his passion for people, social justice, civic engagement, and parental involvement in education, Troy has dedicated more than 50 years to public service.

Ann B. Walker was the first female and African-American journalist to cover Columbus City Hall and the State of Ohio. Ann B. Walker worked as a radio host, journalist, editor and columnist in Columbus for decades. She is a woman of many firsts: the first woman in broadcast management at WLWC-TV in Columbus (today’s NBC4), the very first female broadcaster to report on the Ohio Legislature, and the first black woman from Franklin County given a White House appointment.

Catherine Willis dedicated her career to instilling knowledge and developing students to become lifelong learners. Nearly 50 years ago, she co-founded Friends of Art for Community Enrichment (F.A.C.E.) to introduce children to the art and culture of Africa and African Americans. In 2007, she founded Urban Strings, an organization dedicated to supporting underserved minority youth in playing string instruments. Willis also co-founded the Lunch Bunch, sponsors of Helen Jenkins Davis Scholarship Fund.

Sanborn Wood, affectionately known as Sandy, is the godfather of Columbus’ Short North Arts District. Sandy had a remarkable vision for the area between downtown and Ohio State in the early 1980s. He believed it possible to transform it into a premiere district that would celebrate entrepreneurship and the arts. Sandy’s early investments in commercial and residential real estate along with his vision have created a vibrant corridor that is unmatched.

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