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Harold Pates

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Information about Harold Pates

Profile image of Harold Pates

Profession

Category:
CivicMakers
EducationMakers
Occupation(s):
Cultural Activist
College President
Teacher

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black
Favorite Food:
Pie (Sweet Potato)
Favorite Time of Year:
Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Palm Springs, California
Favorite Quote:
Ain't Nobody Right But God.

Birthplace

Born:
10/31/1931
Birth Location:
Macon, Mississippi

Profession

Category:
CivicMakers
EducationMakers
Occupation(s):
Cultural Activist
College President
Teacher

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black
Favorite Food:
Pie (Sweet Potato)
Favorite Time of Year:
Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Palm Springs, California
Favorite Quote:
Ain't Nobody Right But God.

Birthplace

Born:
10/31/1931
Birth Location:
Macon
See how Harold Pates is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Educator and cultural activist Harold Pates was born October 31, 1931, in Macon, Mississippi. His great aunt, raised in slavery, lost two fingers to her master for attempting to read. Pates’ parents, Amanda Beasley Pates and Squire Pates were graduates of Bolivar Training School in Mound Bayou, Mississsippi. Migrating to Chicago, Illinois, Pates attended Forestville Elementary School and DuSable High School graduating in 1948. Taught music by DuSable’s Captain Walter Dyett, Pates played with Eddie Harris, Richard Davis, John Gilmore, Jimmy Ellis and other future greats. Pates graduated from Wilson Junior College in 1952 and DePaul University with his B.A. degree in English in 1954. He earned his M.A. degree from DePaul in 1956 and received his PhD degree from the University of Chicago in 1976.

Pates taught at Fuller Elementary School and Forestville Elementary School, and was assistant principal of DuSable Upper Grade Center from 1964 to 1968. He served as a counselor at DuSable Upper Grade Center and High School and as a guidance counselor for the Hyde Park Evening School. As teacher and administrator, Pates joined Lawrence Landry, Lu and Jorja Palmer, Rev. C.T. Vivian, Lorenzo Martin, Bobby E. Wright, and others in agitating for African American concerns in the Chicago Public Schools. In 1968, he joined Loop College where he became director of the Admissions Department. Pates also taught at Loyola University, George Williams College, Northeastern Illinois University, and Concordia College. He also helped plan the first Upward Bound Program. Appointed dean of career programs at Malcolm X College in 1981, Pates moved on to Kennedy-King College as a dean in 1983. In 1986, Pates was named president of Kennedy-King College, serving until 1997. At Kennedy-King, he provided access for cultural and civic organizations and events at an unprecedented level.

Active in efforts to generate an African version of the history and culture of Africa and to infuse the black experience into the educational system, Pates was a founder of the Chicago Communiversity and the Association of African Educators with Anderson Thompson in the late 1960s. He was a founding member of the Kemetic Institute, the Association of Black Psychologists, the National Association of Black School Educators, the Black United Front, the Chicago Task Force for Black Political Empowerment, the Association for the Study of Classical African Civilizations, and the Harold Washington Institute. Recipient of numerous awards, ranging from the Chancellors Award for outstanding Leadership to the Muntu Dance Theatre’s Alyo Award, Pates currently serves on the board of the Black United Fund of Illinois and the advisory board of the Jacob H. Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies of Northeastern Illinois University. He is founding director of the All African World Virtual University. Fit, playing full court basketball into his 70s, Pates, now retired, enjoys golf and playing jazz on the cornet.

A widower, Pates has a grown daughter and son.

See how Harold Pates is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Harold Pates' interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Harold Pates lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes his mother's family history in the A.M.E. church
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Harold Pates recalls working conditions in his maternal family's community in the South
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Harold Pates recalls traveling to Mississippi as a boy
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Harold Pates explains why his parents sent him south for the summers
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Harold Pates describes his mother's personality, pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes his mother's personality, pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Harold Pates describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Harold Pates relates his paternal family's stories from the era of slavery
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Harold Pates recalls spending summers in Macon, Mississippi as a boy
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Harold Pates describes confrontations with whites in Mississippi, pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Harold Pates recalls confrontations with whites in Mississippi, pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Harold Pates describes his father's community in Mound Bayou, Mississippi
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Harold Pates recalls his father's move from Mississippi to Chicago
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls his father's work for the post office
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes his siblings
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes his sister's career as an opera singer
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Harold Pates describes his earliest childhood memory, pt. 1
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Harold Pates describes his earliest childhood memory, pt. 2
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Harold Pates describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Harold Pates remembers learning to drive at the age of twelve
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood during his childhood
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Harold Pates recalls performers who lived in and visited Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Harold Pates recalls his activities as a child in Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Harold Pates describes being a paperboy in Chicago's white neighborhoods
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Harold Pates recalls running policy as a child in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes influential figures in Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls famous musicians from Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes the geography of his childhood neighborhood on Chicago's South Side
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes his father's civil rights activism
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Harold Pates talks about systemic racial oppression
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Harold Pates recalls segregation in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Harold Pates describes racial tension in Chicago's South Side neighborhoods
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Harold Pates recalls Chicago's political machine in Bronzeville
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls institutions in Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes businesses in Chicago's Bronzeville neighborhood
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Harold Pates recalls a teacher at Chicago's Forrestville Elementary School
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Harold Pates describes his grade school experiences in Chicago
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Harold Pates describes his extracurricular activities during grade school
  • Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Harold Pates recalls his childhood neighbor William Cousins, Jr.
  • Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Harold Pates describes his favorite activities at Chicago's DuSable High School
  • Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes politically radical community groups in Chicago
  • Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Harold Pates recalls hearing W.E.B. Du Bois and Paul Robeson speak, pt. 1
  • Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Harold Pates recalls hearing W.E.B. Du Bois and Paul Robeson speak, pt. 2
  • Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Harold Pates describes the social atmosphere of Chicago's DuSable High School
  • Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Harold Pates recalls musicians who studied at Chicago's DuSable High School
  • Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Harold Pates remembers working as a musician as a teenager
  • Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Harold Pates recalls graduating from Chicago's DuSable High School
  • Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Harold Pates describes working for Wisconsin Steel, pt. 1
  • Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes working for Wisconsin Steel, pt. 2
  • Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes his initial setbacks at Chicago's Wilson Junior College
  • Tape: 8 Story: 5 - Harold Pates reflects on his father's support for his education
  • Tape: 8 Story: 6 - Harold Pates describes his experiences at Chicago's DePaul University
  • Tape: 8 Story: 7 - Harold Pates explains how his DePaul University degree helped him to find a job
  • Tape: 9 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes his academic pursuits at DePaul University
  • Tape: 9 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls befriending Italian Americans at DePaul University
  • Tape: 9 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes his impressions of DePaul University
  • Tape: 9 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes his own and his brother's careers during the 1950s
  • Tape: 9 Story: 5 - Harold Pates recalls his first position as a teacher in Chicago
  • Tape: 9 Story: 6 - Harold Pates describes teaching at an all-girls school
  • Tape: 9 Story: 7 - Harold Pates describes the lessons he learned early in his teaching career
  • Tape: 10 Story: 1 - Harold Pates recalls his fellow teachers at Chicago's Fuller Elementary School
  • Tape: 10 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls his concern over expulsions at Fuller Elementary School
  • Tape: 10 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes discrimination against black teachers in Chicago Public Schools
  • Tape: 10 Story: 4 - Harold Pates recalls students from Chicago's Forrestville Elementary School
  • Tape: 10 Story: 5 - Harold Pates recalls how he enjoyed teaching at Forrestville Elementary School
  • Tape: 10 Story: 6 - Harold Pates recalls his decision to leave Forrestville Elementary School
  • Tape: 11 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes his disagreements with the principal of Forrestville Elementary School
  • Tape: 11 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls becoming a teacher at Chicago's DuSable Upper Grade Center
  • Tape: 11 Story: 3 - Harold Pates recalls tension between the students and teachers at DuSable Upper Grade Center
  • Tape: 11 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes a violent incident with a student at DuSable Upper Grade Center
  • Tape: 11 Story: 5 - Harold Pates recalls the overcrowding of Chicago's black schools
  • Tape: 11 Story: 6 - Harold Pates explains how the Willis Wagons controversy mobilized black leadership
  • Tape: 12 Story: 1 - Slating of Harold Pates' interview, session 2
  • Tape: 12 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls racial discrimination in Chicago's trade schools
  • Tape: 12 Story: 3 - Harold Pates recalls biases in the hiring of principals in Chicago Public Schools
  • Tape: 12 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes working for Galeta Kaar at DuSable Upper Grade Center
  • Tape: 12 Story: 5 - Harold Pates talks about Reverend Dr. C.T. Vivian
  • Tape: 12 Story: 6 - Harold Pates recalls joining Loyola University Chicago's Upward Bound program
  • Tape: 12 Story: 7 - Harold Pates describes his career ambitions during the late 1960s
  • Tape: 12 Story: 8 - Harold Pates recalls Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination
  • Tape: 13 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes tensions around integration in Chicago during the 1950s and 1960s
  • Tape: 13 Story: 2 - Harold Pates describes the reaction of Chicago's black community to Dr. King's death
  • Tape: 13 Story: 3 - Harold Pates recalls incidents that led to the Selma to Montgomery marches
  • Tape: 13 Story: 4 - Harold Pates recalls his experience in the 1965 Selma to Montgomery march
  • Tape: 13 Story: 5 - Harold Pates recalls becoming director of admissions at Chicago's Loop College
  • Tape: 13 Story: 6 - Harold Pates remembers black organizations in Chicago in the late 1960s
  • Tape: 14 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes the influence of the University of Chicago in Chicago's Woodlawn neighborhood
  • Tape: 14 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls the rise of the Blackstone Rangers
  • Tape: 14 Story: 3 - Harold Pates recalls mediating between gangs in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 14 Story: 4 - Harold Pates recalls the growth of African American studies programs
  • Tape: 14 Story: 5 - Harold Pates recalls his involvement in the National Association for College Admission Counseling
  • Tape: 14 Story: 6 - Harold Pates recalls the founding of Chicago's Communiversity
  • Tape: 14 Story: 7 - Harold Pates recalls the rise of the Black Power movement in the late 1960s
  • Tape: 15 Story: 1 - Harold Pates reflects on the importance of black institutions
  • Tape: 15 Story: 2 - Harold Pates talks about the educational philosophy of Chicago's Communiversity
  • Tape: 15 Story: 3 - Harold Pates describes problems with the Eurocentric version of history
  • Tape: 15 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes the structure of Chicago's Communiversity
  • Tape: 15 Story: 5 - Harold Pates recalls a quarrel with Sol Tax at the University of Chicago
  • Tape: 15 Story: 6 - Harold Pates reflects upon the mission of the Communiversity
  • Tape: 16 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes his administrative tenure at Chicago's Loop College
  • Tape: 16 Story: 2 - Harold Pates recalls fellow faculty members at Chicago's Loop College
  • Tape: 16 Story: 3 - Harold Pates recalls becoming a dean of Chicago's Malcolm X College
  • Tape: 16 Story: 4 - Harold Pates recalls being appointed president of Chicago's Kennedy-King College
  • Tape: 16 Story: 5 - Harold Pates describes the politics of Kennedy-King College
  • Tape: 16 Story: 6 - Harold Pates recalls a negative news story about Kennedy-King College
  • Tape: 16 Story: 7 - Harold Pates recalls community engagement at Kennedy-King College
  • Tape: 17 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes his policies as Kennedy-King College president
  • Tape: 17 Story: 2 - Harold Pates describes programs he introduced at Kennedy-King College
  • Tape: 17 Story: 3 - Harold Pates talks about plans for a new facility for Kennedy-King College
  • Tape: 17 Story: 4 - Harold Pates describes life after his retirement from Kennedy-King College
  • Tape: 17 Story: 5 - Harold Pates talks about a controversy at Kennedy-King College
  • Tape: 17 Story: 6 - Harold Pates reflects upon his life
  • Tape: 18 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community, pt. 1
  • Tape: 18 Story: 2 - Harold Pates describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community, pt. 2
  • Tape: 18 Story: 3 - Harold Pates considers contemporary leaders in the African American community
  • Tape: 18 Story: 4 - Harold Pates reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 18 Story: 5 - Harold Pates reflects upon his family life
  • Tape: 18 Story: 6 - Harold Pates talks about the importance of rejecting materialism
  • Tape: 18 Story: 7 - Harold Pates reflects upon the role of music in his life
  • Tape: 19 Story: 1 - Harold Pates describes how he would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 19 Story: 2 - Harold Pates narrates his photographs