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Francis Ward

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Information about Francis Ward

Profile image of Francis Ward

Profession

Category:
EducationMakers
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Journalism Professor
Newspaper Correspondent

Favorites

Favorite Color:
None
Favorite Food:
Black-Eyed Peas, Macaroni
Favorite Time of Year:
None
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Anywhere Warm
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
8/11/1935
Birth Location:
Atlanta, Georgia

Profession

Category:
EducationMakers
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Journalism Professor
Newspaper Correspondent

Favorites

Favorite Color:
None
Favorite Food:
Black-Eyed Peas, Macaroni
Favorite Time of Year:
None
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Anywhere Warm
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
8/11/1935
Birth Location:
Atlanta
See how Francis Ward is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Usher Francis Ward was born in Atlanta, Georgia on August 11, 1935. After graduating from Booker T. Washington High School in 1953, Ward attended Morehouse College, earning his B.A. in English in 1958. From there, he attended Syracuse University, earning his master’s in journalism in 1961.

While attending Morehouse, Ward took a job at the Atlanta Daily World as a janitor, and after his graduation, he spent several months working as a proofreader and wrote a few articles. In 1964, Ward met Bob Johnson, and was hired by Jet magazine. In 1967, he was promoted to Ebony, and the following year he made the move to the Chicago Sun-Times. There, he covered the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., and the aftermath, as well as writing a tribute to Gwendolyn Brooks. In 1970, Ward became the Chicago correspondent for the L.A. Times, where he remained until 1978. That year, he joined the staff of the Miami Herald, and in 1980, he joined WHUT-TV at Howard University. In 1984, Ward joined the mayor’s press corps in Chicago as an assistant press secretary, and he remained there until 1989, working through the administrations of Harold Washington and Eugene Sawyer. After a brief teaching stint at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, he was hired by the Newhouse School of Journalism at his alma mater of Syracuse University in 1990. He remains there today.

Ward has always felt that journalism is a public service, and he has often spoken out on media responsibility. He and his wife, actress Val Gray Ward, live in New York.

See how Francis Ward is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Francis Ward's interview, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Slating of Francis Ward's interview, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Francis Ward lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Francis Ward talks about his mother and father's backgrounds
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Francis Ward shares a story about his father and an escaped hog
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Francis Ward talks about the origin of his name
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Francis Ward talks about his parents' educational background and values
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Francis Ward describes the churches his parents attended in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Francis Ward describes his childhood neighborhood in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Francis Ward describes his earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Francis Ward describes the sights, sounds and smells of growing up in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Francis Ward remembers learning about politics at the 1948 Democratic National Convention
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Francis Ward describes the values his parents taught him
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Francis Ward recalls his early career aspirations
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Francis Ward describes what kind of student he was in school
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Francis Ward describes his interest in sports growing up
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Francis Ward talks about his baseball coach at Booker T. Washington High School in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Francis Ward describes transferring from Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Missouri to Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Francis Ward talks about his influential teachers at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Francis Ward describes an incident with the House Un-American Activities Committee during the McCarthy era
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Francis Ward remembers the aftermath of the Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka decision in 1954
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Francis Ward talks about Benjamin Mays, president of Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Francis Ward talks about the reputation of Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Francis Ward talks about Morehouse College alumni groups
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Francis Ward describes working at the Atlanta Daily World
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Francis Ward recalls working as a proofreader at the Atlanta Daily World during a Scott family feud
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Francis Ward talks about attending the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Francis Ward describes what he learned at S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Francis Ward remembers attending a Syracuse Nationals game
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Francis Ward talks about moving to New York, New York in the early 1960s
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Francis Ward describes working at Jet magazine in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Francis Ward describes his experience covering a story in Natchez, Mississippi in 1965
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Francis Ward talks about the conflict in Natchez, Mississippi
  • Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Francis Ward describes meeting his wife, HistoryMaker Val Gray Ward
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Francis Ward talks about the Atlanta Black Crackers Negro League baseball team
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Francis Ward remembers watching Jackie Robinson play baseball in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Francis Ward describes covering the 1967 fight between Muhammad Ali and HistoryMaker Ernie Terrell for Jet magazine
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Francis Ward describes the types of stories he worked on for Ebony magazine
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Francis Ward remembers a meeting about covering radical political figures at Ebony magazine
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Francis Ward talks about the white media's portrayal of Civil Rights leaders
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Francis Ward describes why Negro Digest's name was changed to Black World in 1970
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Francis Ward remembers the background of the Chicago, Illinois riots of 1965 and 1966
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Francis Ward describes the 1968 riot in Chicago, Illinois following Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s death
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Francis Ward describes the founding of Kuumba Theatre in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Francis Ward describes the plays performed by the Kuumba Theatre
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Francis Ward critiques blaxploitation films from the 1970s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Francis Ward explains the issues that were addressed in the Kuumba News
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Francis Ward talks about the controversy over funding for the Kuumba Theatre
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Francis Ward describes the founding of First World: An International Journal of Black Thought
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Francis Ward considers HistoryMaker John H. Johnson's reasoning for discontinuing Black World
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Francis Ward reflects upon an article he wrote in First World: An International Journal of Black Thought
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Francis Ward talks about joining the Los Angeles Times as a reporter
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Francis Ward describes his work and activities between 1975 and 1984
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Francis Ward recalls working in the press office of Chicago, Illinois Mayor Harold Washington
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Francis Ward talks about working for HistoryMaker Eugene Sawyer's interim mayoral administration
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Francis Ward recalls how he began working at S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Francis Ward explains his philosophy for teaching journalism
  • Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Francis Ward critiques the worship of celebrities
  • Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Francis Ward describes his concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Francis Ward talks about his family
  • Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Francis Ward considers his greatest regret
  • Tape: 6 Story: 11 - Francis Ward reflects upon Harold Washington's accomplishments as mayor of Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 6 Story: 12 - Francis Ward talks about Harold Washington's association with Clarence McClain
  • Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Francis Ward shares his thoughts about Harold Washington, former mayor of Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Francis Ward critiques Harold Washington's mayoral tenure
  • Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Francis Ward reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Francis Ward gives advice to aspiring journalists
  • Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Francis Ward describes how he would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Francis Ward narrates his photographs