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Colbert I. King

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Information about Colbert I. King

Profile image of Colbert I. King

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Newspaper Editor
Newspaper Columnist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
It Is What It Is.

Birthplace

Born:
9/20/1939
Birth Location:
Washington, District of Columbia

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Newspaper Editor
Newspaper Columnist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
It Is What It Is.

Birthplace

Born:
9/20/1939
Birth Location:
Washington
See how Colbert I. King is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Newspaper columnist and newspaper editor winning columnist Colbert King was born September 20, 1939 to Amelia Colbert King and Isaiah King III in Washington, D.C. Growing up in the old Foggy Bottom section of Washington, D.C. King attended Thaddeus Stevens Elementary School, Francis Junior High School, and graduated from Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in 1957, where he was a member of the ROTC and Dunbar’s championship drill team. King earned a B.A. in government from Howard University in 1961, where he heard lectures by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Patrice Lumumba and Walter White.

After graduating from Howard University in 1961, King married Gwendolyn Stewart King, on July 3, 1961. King served as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army’s Adjutant General’s Corps from 1961 to 1963. After a brief time with the U.S. Civil Service Commission, he served as a special agent for the U.S. State Department but quit because of his disagreement with Counter Intelligence Program (COINTELPRO). In 1970, King, on a fellowship with James Farmer at Health Education and Welfare, called attention to sickle-cell anemia and the unequal attention given minority health care. From 1971 to 1972, he worked for Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA), an anti-poverty program created by President Lyndon B. Johnson. King drafted the District of Columbia Home Rule Act of 1973, which effectively combined Washington D.C. and areas like Georgetown, and the Conflict of Interests Bill. In 1975, King left government service, but returned in 1976 as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Department. In 1979, President Jimmy Carter appointed King as the United States Executive of the World Bank. In this position, King successfully helped Robert McNamara include the People’s Republic of China into the World Bank. King left in 1980 to become executive vice president of the Middle East and Africa divisions at Riggs National Bank. At Riggs National Bank, King was concerned with federal financial services, international banking and third world indebtedness. In 1990, King joined the editorial board of the Washington Post in Washington D.C. He started writing a weekly column in 1995 and in 2000, King was appointed deputy editor of the Washington Post editorial page.

In 2003, King received the Pulitzer Prize for his columns, which often challenged racial discrimination and religious fundamentalism, critiqued the criminal justice system, and spoke out against the exploitation of the poor. King lives in Washington D.C. with his wife Gwendolyn. His son, Rob King, is the editor-in-chief of ESPN Digital Media.

Colbert I. King was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on May 4, 2005.

See how Colbert I. King is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Colbert I. King's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes his maternal ancestry
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King describes his mother's childhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes his father's family background, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King describes his father's family background, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Colbert I. King describes his father
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King describes how his parents met and his father's profession
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King describes his parent's personalities and his siblings
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood, pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood, pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King recalls the class structure in Washington, D.C.'s Foggy Bottom neighborhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King remembers his childhood in Washington, D.C.'s Foggy Bottom neighborhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Colbert I. King describes the importance of church in his life
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King recalls his experiences at Thaddeus Stevens Elementary School
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King remembers his childhood in segregated Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his favorite subjects and teachers in school
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King recalls his time at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King recalls lessons from his high school teacher, William Rumsey
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes his experience at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King explains his decision to attend Howard University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King recalls popular music and the student population during his time at Howard University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his professors at Howard University, pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes his professors at Howard University, pt. 2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King describes his social life at Howard University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes how he became interested in writing
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King recalls civil rights activities at Howard University
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King recalls political figures who visited Howard University, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King recalls political figures who visited Howard University, pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his U.S. Army service
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes working for the U.S. Department of State
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King recalls his work with the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes his various government positions during the 1970s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King remembers working for the Carter Administration
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King recalls the People's Republic of China joining the World Bank
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King describes the policies of the World Bank under the Reagan Administration
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his role at Riggs Bank in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes his work at The Washington Post
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King describes his columns for The Washington Post, pt. 1
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes his columns for The Washington Post, pt. 2
  • Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King describes his column, 'Pat Robertson's Gold'