Truth and the Wise Woman – Josefa James

Meet Josefa James, a multiracial trailblazer and advocate for education, justice, people of color, and women. Born as the fourth child among ten siblings, Josefa grew up in a diverse household with a Creole father and an Irish mother, instilling a strong sense of cultural richness. 

The family's emphasis on education was pivotal in shaping Josefa's life. With a passion for learning, Josefa pursued higher education at the University of California Irvine, majoring in psychology. Pursuing her dream of being a civil rights attorney, she moved to San Francisco in 1976 to attend law school. After passing the bar exam, the position no longer existed, and her career took another turn.

San Francisco became Josefa's home for the next 47 years, where she immersed herself in building a close-knit community and raising her son as a dedicated single mother.

In 1989, she embarked on a career as a deputy district attorney in Alameda County, fighting for justice and fairness within the legal system. Throughout her  31 1/2 years in the role, Josefa left an indelible mark on the community and fought tirelessly for the rights of others.

In addition to her professional accomplishments, Josefa nurtured a love of travel and writing. For over 54 years, she has been journaling to capture the essence of these adventures and reflections. 

In this conversation, Josefa and Catherine discuss…

  • Women and the role of wealth in holding power
  • How the law shapes our reality and how this is changing
  • The importance of education in having power
  • The experience of being a woman of color
  • Bringing the feminine and masculine into balance and wholeness
  • The cost of the feminine being out of balance
  • Reclaiming the power of the mother
  • Reconnecting wisdom into places of wounding 
  • Embracing the beauty of the masculine and raising healthy men
  • The ferocity of the mother as a sacred power
  • Leadership as alignment and embodiment of truth
  • The truth-telling of the feminine
  • Our responsibility to take care of what is ours
  • Working with the programming of unworthiness
  • The challenges of identity 

Recently retired, Josefa has embraced a new chapter in life and relocated to the serene beauty of the Monterey Bay Area. Josefa continues her dedication to fostering positive change, and her love for learning and exploration remain ever-strong. Josefa continues to inspire those around her, leaving a lasting impact on every person she touches.

For more from Magnolia Leadership, follow us:


Song Credit: All Related, by Nessi Gomes