Xavier R. Richardson

Xavier R. Richardson (1957–)

Mentor/executive and community leader

Fredericksburg native Xavier R. Richardson currently works in his hometown as executive vice president of Corporate Development and Community Affairs for the Mary Washington Healthcare system. He also serves as president of Mary Washington Hospital and Stafford Hospital Foundations.

After receiving his MBA from Harvard University in 1983, Richardson worked on Wall Street and came to know Wyatt Tee Walker, pastor of Canaan Baptist Church of Christ, in Harlem. Inspired by Walker's work with disadvantaged youth, Richardson and a group of community professionals founded the Partnership for Academic Excellence to address the underachievement of minority students in the Fredericksburg area. Since 1989 more than 3,000 students have benefited from this initiative and many have gone on to become first generation college students.

Richardson has parlayed his success into many other ventures that aspire to improving his community. He serves as co-director of the Walker-Grant Cultural and Educational Center (housed in the school building he once attended) and has provided leadership to such varied organizations as the Moss Free Clinic, the Ann Hamrick Community House for preschoolers of low-income families, and the Black Arts Festival of Fredericksburg.

Richardson serves his community not only as a leader but also by example, often sharing adages with youth that reflect his principles and values. "You're writing your story every day by the way you live" sums up the spirit and philosophy he lives by and by which he inspires others to live.

Read interview from Free-Lance Star, Feb. 4, 2006

Educational Questions:

  1. Why do you think it is important for people like Mr. Richardson to be a role model for younger people?
  2. Do you think the analogy of the grass is true?
  3. What are some ways you can become an inspiration for others?

Download Xavier R. Richardson's proofreading exercise. Visit the For Educators section for more information and to download the exercise containing all eight 2013 honorees.