Judy Green dies after suffering heart attack; Funeral arrangements set


by Joe Arnold


Posted on January 18, 2013 at 6:25 PM

Updated Friday, Jan 18 at 6:25 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky (WHAS11) -- Former Louisville Metro Councilwoman Judy Green died Tuesday at Jewish Hospital after suffering a massive heart attack, her family and friends tell WHAS11 News.  Clinically dead since Tuesday morning, Green was removed from life support Tuesday afternoon with her husband and family at her side.

Green, a longtime West End dentist and civic volunteer, was 57. 

First elected in 2006, Green's tenure ended with an ethics investigation and her fellow council members expelling her in September, 2011. At issue were a summer jobs program that employed Green's relatives among others and how she handled a council grant.

"I think that overshadowed the things that she did in District 1," said Denise Bentley, Green's friend and a former councilwoman.  "I have been out with Judy many times since she had left office and people would stop her and say, 'Thank you for what you have done. You helped me get a water heater, you helped me get my street paved, you helped me get my kid a summer job.'"

"We loved her," said Shirley Fishback, a 1st District resident.  "She would help us out in any way that she possibly could."

"Judy had a good heart and she loved her community,” Mayor Greg Fischer said in a statement. “My thoughts are with her family during this difficult time.”

“The Metro Council is saddened to learn of the passing of Dr. Judy Green," Council President Jim King said in a statement.  "She served the people of her community for many years and was always a strong advocate for children. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Green family during this time of grief.”

As word circulated in the far West End's 1st District, her former constituents expressed hope that Green would be remembered for her contributions and not her controversies.

"I think she did a good job," said Elizabeth Clark. "She might have done some bad things but some pretty good jobs."

"(Green) seemed to be a lady with a kind heart," added Ronald Goldstein.  "I don't think she meant to do nothing in the past that was wrong but she did a lot besides her mistakes."

Green had vowed to fight for her council seat "to the bitter end," yet tried to submit her resignation after the council voted to expel her.

"Whoever decided they wanted to besmirch my name, it's turned me into a local celebrity," Green told WHAS11 in 2011.

"I continue to say I did nothing wrong but tried to help my district by providing jobs to youth," Green said in the September 9, 2011 interview.  "I did not mismanage a dime.  I never wrote a check. I never did anything wrong."

Green told WHAS11 that concerns about her heart were a factor in her resignation.  During the proceedings, the council had rejected her request for a medical delay.

Bentley said she believes the stress of the investigation took a toll on Green's health, yet said Green "sounded fine" when she spoke to her Monday night.

"She was a people person and most importantly I want people to remember that Judy and her husband's ministry was to help kids in need," Bentley said.  "And she displayed that through the adoption of many, many children."

"She didn't care about them having any mental problems or any type of physical problems," Bentley continued.  "She wanted to embrace those kids and give them a chance at life."

St. Stephen Church pastor Kevin Cosby joined Green's family at the hospital, later releasing a statement via Twitter.

"Please remember the family of Dr. Judy Green in the passing of this phenomenal woman," Cosby tweeted.  "Judy and James raised 40 kids during their 35 year marriage.

The funeral will be 11:00 a.m. Saturday at St. Stephen Baptist Church, 1018 S. 15th St., with burial in Green Meadows Cemetery. Visitation: 6-9 p.m. Friday at the church. A Service of Remembrance will be held Friday at 8:15 p.m. Arrangements: A. D. Porter & Sons, 1300 W. Chestnut St.