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Edgar Duncan

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Information about Edgar Duncan

Profile image of Edgar Duncan

Profession

Category:
MedicalMakers
PoliticalMakers
Occupation(s):
Pharmacist
Presidential Appointee

Favorites

Favorite Color:
None
Favorite Food:
Pancakes
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall, Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
Right Place, Right Time, Right Person.

Birthplace

Born:
2/1/1932
Birth Location:
Monessen, Pennsylvania

Profession

Category:
MedicalMakers
PoliticalMakers
Occupation(s):
Pharmacist
Presidential Appointee

Favorites

Favorite Color:
None
Favorite Food:
Pancakes
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall, Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
Right Place, Right Time, Right Person.

Birthplace

Born:
2/1/1932
Birth Location:
Monessen
See how Edgar Duncan is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Accomplished pharmacist Dr. Edgar Newton Duncan was born on February 1, 1932 in Monessen, Pennsylvania to Willie and William Duncan. Duncan’s father worked as a tailor in the first tailor shop in Monessen. Duncan’s mother, graduated from the Tuskegee Institute, became a teacher, married and passed on her love of learning to her six children. Excelling in school, Duncan knew that he wanted to go to college. After graduating from high school as class valedictorian, Duncan went on to Duquesne University.

In 1954, Duncan would be the only black student in his class to graduate from Duquesne University with a B.S. degree in pharmacy. He graduated magna cum laude. At Duquesne University, Duncan would meet Lauraine Thorne, and the two would get married in 1954. In 1956, Duncan became the first black student to graduate with his M.S. degree in hygiene from the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School of Public Health (GSPH). Duncan began working in the U.S. Public Health Service’s Commissioned Officers Corps, and in 1972, he became the first pharmacist to be promoted to surgeon general. After returning as Associate Dean of GSPH, he began to work with Pitt’s Partners in Education Consortium and other programs to encourage black and other minority youth to pursue health professions. These programs have made a difference for many young minority students.

In 1990, Duncan earned his Ph.D. in higher education administration from the University of Pittsburgh School of Education. He and his wife raised three sons and sent them all to college.

Duncan passed away on December 17, 2011.

Duncan was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on August 13, 2008.

See how Edgar Duncan is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Edgar Duncan's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Edgar Duncan lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Edgar Duncan describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Edgar Duncan describes his mother's experiences at the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Edgar Duncan recalls visiting the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Edgar Duncan describes how his parents met and married
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Edgar Duncan talks about his mother's friendships
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Edgar Duncan describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Edgar Duncan describes his paternal ancestry
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Edgar Duncan talks about his father's upbringing
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Edgar Duncan recalls his family's emphasis on education
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Edgar Duncan remembers his father's profession and talents
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Edgar Duncan recalls his parents' personalities and who he takes after
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Edgar Duncan describes his earliest childhood memories
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Edgar Duncan remembers his community in Monessen, Pennsylvania
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Edgar Duncan describes the sights, sounds and smells of his neighborhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Edgar Duncan recalls his early education
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Edgar Duncan recalls his early experiences of religion
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Edgar Duncan describes his childhood personality
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Edgar Duncan recalls his mentors in school
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Edgar Duncan recalls his activities at Monessen Vocational High School in Monessen, Pennsylvania
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Edgar Duncan remembers his early aspirations
  • Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Edgar Duncan recalls his valedictorian speech
  • Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Edgar Duncan remembers Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Edgar Duncan describes his experiences at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Edgar Duncan recalls his extracurricular activities at Duquesne University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Edgar Duncan remembers his mentors at Duquesne University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Edgar Duncan recalls attending the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Edgar Duncan recalls his graduation from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Edgar Duncan recalls his accomplishments as a pharmacist in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Edgar Duncan talks about his rank in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Edgar Duncan describes the history of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Edgar Duncan recalls his work with the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Edgar Duncan recalls his promotion to assistant surgeon general
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Edgar Duncan reflects upon his role as assistant surgeon general
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Edgar Duncan recalls his roles at the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Edgar Duncan describes his position at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Edgar Duncan recalls his role as a researcher for the Health ABC Study
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Edgar Duncan remembers earning a Ph.D. degree from the University of Pittsburgh School of Education
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Edgar Duncan recalls his retirement from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Edgar Duncan reflects upon his life
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Edgar Duncan reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Edgar Duncan describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Edgar Duncan reflects upon his family
  • Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Edgar Duncan reflects upon the importance of education
  • Tape: 4 Story: 12 - Edgar Duncan describes how he would like to be remembered