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Joe Pat Tolson (April 15, 1941 – February 3, 2019) was a Democratic member of the North Carolina General Assembly[1] representing the state's twenty-third House district, including constituents in Edgecombe and Wilson counties. A retired educator from Pinetops, North Carolina, Tolson retired after the 2013-2014 session, serving his ninth term in the state House.[2] He was replaced by Shelly Willingham. Tolson died in 2019 from respiratory failure at a hospital in Tarboro, North Carolina.[3]

Joe P. Tolson
Joe Pat Tolson.jpg
Member of the North Carolina House of Representatives
from the 23rd district
In office
Succeeded byShelly Willingham
Personal details
Born(1941-04-15)April 15, 1941
Pinetops, North Carolina, U.S.
DiedFebruary 3, 2019(2019-02-03) (aged 77)
Tarboro, North Carolina, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Alma materBarton College, University of Virginia

Tolson received his bachelor's and master's degrees from Barton College and University of Virginia. He served as assistant vice-president for Edgecombe Community College.[4]


  1. ^ "Representative Joe P. Tolson (Democrat, 2011-2012 Session)". North Carolina General Assembly. Retrieved 31 March 2011.
  2. ^ "The Voter's Self Defense System". Vote Smart.
  3. ^ "Former North Carolina state Rep. Joe Tolson dies at 77". The Sacramento Bee. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  4. ^ "Joe Tolson Obituary - Tarboro, NC | The News & Observer".