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John Silvanus Wilson, Jr.

College president and academic administrator John Silvanus Wilson, Jr. was born on August 16, 1957 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Genester Millicent Nix and John Silvanus Wilson, Sr. He received his B.A. degree in business administration and management from Morehouse College in 1979. In 1981, Wilson earned his M.T.S. degree from Harvard Divinity School. He then attended the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where he earned his Ed.M. degree in education in 1982, and his Ed.D. degree in education in 1985.

Wilson began his career in 1985 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he served as an associate in the analytical studies and planning group in the office of the president. In that role, he conducted research for a report on the experiences of African American students at MIT. He then shifted to financial management and fundraising, serving first in corporate development and, ultimately, as director of foundation relations by 1994. He was an officer in two major capital campaigns at MIT, with goals of $700 million and $2 billion. In 2001, he moved from MIT to The George Washington University in Washington D.C. During his eight-year career at there, Wilson served as senior assistant vice president from September to December 2001, executive dean of the Virginia campus from 2002 to 2006, and associate professor at the Graduate School of Education and Human Development from 2007 to 2009. He was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve as executive director of the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities in 2009, where he remained until 2013. From January 2013 to April 2017, Wilson served as the eleventh president of Morehouse College. He moved to Harvard University as a president in residence at the School of Education, where he began research for a book about the future of American higher education, with an emphasis on HBCUs. In April 2018, Wilson was appointed as senior advisor and strategist to the president of Harvard University.

Wilson has served on multiple boards, including Spelman College and Harvard University. He has received various awards for his work in higher education, including the 1998 Bennie Leadership Award presented by Morehouse College, Ebony magazine’s Power 100 Award in 2014, and the Atlanta Business Chronicle’s 100 Most Influential Atlantans Award in 2015.

Wilson and his wife, Carol Espy-Wilson, have three adult children: twin daughters, Ayana and Ashia, and son, John Silvanus Wilson, III.

John Silvanus Wilson, Jr. was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on August 27, 2019.

Accession Number

A2019.096

Sex

Male

Interview Date

8/27/2019

Last Name

Wilson

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

Silvanus

Schools

Morehouse College

Harvard Divinity School

Harvard Graduate School of Education

First Name

John

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

WIL93

Favorite Season

Summer

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Martha's Vineyard

Favorite Quote

Perspective Is Worth A Hundred Points of IQ and Signal To Noise Ratio Is Everything

Bio Photo
Birth Date

8/16/1957

Birth Place Term
Favorite Food

Mushroom Risotto

Short Description

College president and academic administrator John Silvanus Wilson, Jr. (1957- ) was an academic administrator for twenty eight years before becoming the eleventh president of Morehouse College.

Employment

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The George Washington University

White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Morehouse College

Harvard University School of Education

Harvard University

Kellogg National Fellowship Program

The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Program

Educational Testing Service

Rockefeller Foundation

Favorite Color

Black

W. Paul Coates

Publisher W. Paul Coates was born on July 4, 1946 in West Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Edna Coates and Douglas Cryor. Coates enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in Vietnam from 1965 to 1967. He later received his B.A. degree in community development from the Homestead Montebello Center of Antioch University in Baltimore, Maryland in 1979 and his M.L.S. degree from Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia in 1980.

After Coates returned from Vietnam, he settled in Baltimore, Maryland and began volunteering for the community breakfast program organized by the Baltimore chapter of the Black Panther Party. In 1970, Coates became defense captain of the Baltimore Black Panthers where he was in charge of managing all Panther activities in Maryland, including implementing free clothing and free food programs and housing assistance, before leaving the organization in 1971. He subsequently established the George Jackson Prison Movement to bring Afrocentric literature to inmates. By 1978, the program had transitioned into the Black Classic Press (BCP), which Coates founded in order to publish books by and about people of African descent. After receiving his M.L.S. degree, Coates joined the staff at Howard University’s Moorland-Spingarn Research Center. In 1990, he was a contributing editor for the published work, Black Bibliophiles and Collectors: Preservers of Black History, along with Elinor Des Verney Sinnette and Thomas C. Battle. In 1991, Coates retired from the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center; and, in 1995, he launched BCP Digital Printing to specialize in short-run printing. In 1997, author Walter Mosley granted Black Classic Press domestic and foreign rights to publish his novel Gone Fishin’. The book sold more than 100,000 copies, making it one of the biggest books ever published by Black Classic Press.

Black Classic Press republished several works including Seize the Time: The Story of the Black Panther Party and Huey P. Newton by Bobby Seale in 1991, and Black Fire: An Anthology of Afro-American Writing by Larry Neal and Amiri Baraka in 2007. In 2012, BCP also published A Lie of Reinvention: Correcting Manning Marable’s “Malcolm X,” by Jared A. Ball and Todd Steven Burroughs.

Coates is the father of nine children; Kelly, Jonathan, Malik, Menelik, Ta-Nehisi, Darius, Jared, Damani and Kristance, including two additional adult children through marriage.

W. Paul Coates was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on January 20, 2019.

Accession Number

A2019.005

Sex

Male

Interview Date

1/20/2019

Last Name

Coates

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

Paul

Occupation
Schools

Sojourner-Douglass College with Annapolis High School

Clark Atlanta University

First Name

W.

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

COA02

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Hawaii

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Maryland

Birth Date

7/4/1946

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Baltimore

Favorite Food

N/A

Short Description

Publisher W. Paul Coates (1946 - ) is the founder of Black Classic Press (BCP) and BCP Digital Printing.

Employment

Black Classic Press

Howard University Moorland-Spingarn Research Center

BCP Digital Press

U.S. Army

Favorite Color

Blue

Anita DeFrantz

Nonprofit executive and Olympic athlete Anita DeFrantz was born on October 4, 1952 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Robert David and Anita Page DeFrantz. In 1970, she graduated from Shortridge High School in Indianapolis, Indiana. DeFrantz received her B.A. degree in political philosophy in 1974 from Connecticut College, and her J.D. degree in 1977 from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in Philadelphia.

DeFrantz captained the U.S. women’s rowing team and rowed in the eight boat that won a bronze medal at the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games. In 1977, she started her career as a staff attorney at the Juvenile Law Center of Philadelphia, and was admitted to the Pennsylvania Bar. In 1980, she led the athletes’ fight for the right to compete at the Moscow Olympic Games, including suing the United States Olympic Committee. The International Olympic Committee honored her with the bronze medal of the Olympic Order. DeFrantz served as vice president of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee and was elected to International Olympic Committee membership in 1986, the first African American and the first American woman to serve on the committee. In 1987, DeFrantz was named president of the LA84 Foundation. From 1989 to 1994, she served on the IOC’s Program Commission and is credited with the acceptance of women’s soccer and softball onto the Olympic program. DeFrantz also helped increase the number of women’s competition opportunities on the Olympic program. She was elected to the IOC Executive Board in 1992 and appointed to the IOC’s Olympic Program Commission. In 1995, she was appointed chair of the Women and Sport Working Group; and, in 1997, DeFrantz was the first woman elected to a four-year term as vice president. DeFrantz established the Tubman Truth Corporation in 2016 and served as president. She also served on LA 2028, the Los Angeles organizing committee for the 2028 summer Olympic Games, and was a member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) where she was elected for a second term as a vice president in 2018.

From 1991 to 1999, The Sporting News named DeFrantz one of the 100 most powerful people in sports. In 2003, Sports Illustrated named her one of the 101 most influential minorities in sports; and, in 2006, the NCAA named her one of NCAA’s Most 100 Influential Student Athletes. The French magazine L’Equipe named DeFrantz one of the 10 Women Who Changed Sport in 2010; and, the following year, Newsweek named her one of 150 Women Who Shake the World, and Los Angeles magazine named her one of 10 Women Making a Difference in Los Angeles. In 2016, she received the Olympic Truce Award at the Rio Olympic Games. DeFrantz has also received honorary doctorate degrees from Pepperdine University, Mount Holyoke College and Pomona College. She received the Distinguished Leadership Award from the Center for Sociocultural Sport and Olympic Research (CSSOR) at California State University, Fullerton.

Anita DeFrantz was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on December 12, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.225

Sex

Female

Interview Date

12/12/2018

Last Name

Defrantz

Maker Category
Middle Name

L.

Organizations
First Name

Anita

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

DEF01

Favorite Season

Seasonal Changes

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Puako, Hawaii

Favorite Quote

N/A

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

California

Birth Date

10/4/1952

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Los Angeles

Favorite Food

Chocolate

Short Description

Nonprofit executive and Olympics athlete Anita DeFrantz (1952- ) was captain of the American rowing team at the 1976 Summer Olympics, winning the bronze medal. She also serves as presidency of the LA84 Foundation and senior adviser for Legacy at the Los Angeles organizing committee for the 2028 summer Olympic Games.

Favorite Color

Purple

Roslyn Watson

Investment banker Roslyn Watson was born on October 29, 1949 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Charles and Christine Watson. She attended Joseph Pennell Elementary School and General Louis Wagner Junior High School. Watson graduated from The Philadelphia High School for Girls in 1967 and received her B.A. degree in political science and government from Simmons College in Boston, Massachusetts in 1971. She attended Boston University School of Law from 1972 to 1973, and later became an Alfred P. Sloan Fellow and received her M.B.A. degree from MIT-Sloan School of Management in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1986.

After her first year of law school, Watson worked at the law firm of Hale & Dorr in Boston in 1973. She was then hired by the Massachusetts Port Authority in 1979 and was promoted to general manager in 1982, where she spearheaded the leasing of commercial properties held by Massport, the construction and leasing of the Park Plaza Massachusetts Transportation Building, and the redevelopment of the Commonwealth Pier Five, which became the World Trade Center Boston. In 1982, she was a co-founder of CREW Boston, the region’s leading professional organization for women in commercial real estate. Watson served as vice president at Gunwyn Company in Cambridge from 1986 to 1992, and was named trustee of mutual funds at Dreyfus in New York City in 1990. She established Watson Ventures and served as its founder and president in 1992.

Watson served as Hyams Foundation trustee from 1981 to 2015 and as an independent corporate director of American Express Bank, FSB and vice chair of the board of directors at Pathfinder International. She was named to the board of directors for Dreyfus Alcentra Global Credit Income 2024 Target Term Fund, Inc in 2017. She has also served as member of the board of directors at Hydro One Inc., and as director of SBLI USA Mutual Life Insurance Company, Inc.

Watson received the Boston Big Sister Association Woman of Achievement Award, Boston YMCA Boston Black Achiever and Working Woman Magazine’s Working Woman of the Year.

Roslyn Watson was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on October 24, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.201

Sex

Female

Interview Date

10/24/2018

Last Name

Watson

Maker Category
Organizations
First Name

Roslyn

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

WAT20

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Venice, Italy

Favorite Quote

N/A

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Massachusetts

Birth Date

10/29/1949

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Boston

Favorite Food

Food that I Cook

Short Description

Investment banker Roslyn Watson (1949- ) established Watson Ventures, where, from 1992, she served as founder and president.

Favorite Color

Black

Deborah Jackson

Academic administrator and nonprofit executive Deborah Jackson was born in 1952. She enrolled at Hampton Institute in Hampton, Virginia, but transferred to Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts where she received her B.A. degree in 1974, and her M.S. degree in urban studies and planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1975.

Jackson began her career as a policy analyst and then was promoted to deputy director of the Health Care and Income Security Group at Abt Associates Inc. Jackson then worked as the executive director of the Roxbury Comprehensive Community Health Center. In 1989, she became the first female and African American president and CEO of Morgan Memorial Goodwill Industries, Inc., From there, Jackson was hired as the senior vice president for Network Development and Community Service at Boston Children’s Hospital. She went on to become the vice president for program at the Boston Foundation, where she managed the $50 million grant and initiatives program. In 2002, Jackson was named CEO of the American Red Cross of Massachusetts Bay. During her time there, she led the organization to increase its coverage area. In 2011, Jackson was selected president of Cambridge College.

Jackson was selected a Barr Foundation fellow in 2009, and a fellow at Harvard University's Advanced Leadership Initiative Program. Jackson received an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters Degree from Curry College in 2014. She was a senior fellow at Boston University's Graduate School of Business/Institute for Non-profit Management and Leadership; and a fellow of the British-American Project of Johns Hopkins University School for Advanced International Studies.

She served on the American Red Cross National Diversity Advisory Council, and as the lead director of the board of directors for Eastern Bank. She was a board member of the American Student Assistance Corporation for over fifteen years, as well as serving on the boards of Roxbury Community College, Boston College Carroll School of Management Advisory Board, Northeastern University Corporation, Milton Academy and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care.

Jackson has been the recipient of numerous awards including the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce Pinnacle Award for Achievement in Management, Boston Magazine’s “100 Most Influential Women in Boston,” El Planeta Newspaper’s “100 Most Influential People for Latinos,” and she has been inducted into the Women’s Business Hall of Fame.

She and her husband, architect L. Duane Jackson, have two sons: Leigh Jackson and Jeffrey Jackson.

Deborah Jackson was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on August 23, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.166

Sex

Female

Interview Date

8/23/2018

Last Name

Jackson

Maker Category
Organizations
First Name

Deborah

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

JAC46

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts

Favorite Quote

God Please Grant Me The Courage To Change The Things I Can, The Patience To Accept The Things I Cannot, And Most Of All, The Wisdom To Know The Difference.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Massachusetts

Birth Date

1/14/1952

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Boston

Country

United States of America

Favorite Food

Chicken

Short Description

Academic administrator and nonprofit executive (1952- ) was selected president of Cambridge College in 2011. In 2002, Jackson was named CEO of the American Red Cross of Massachusetts Bay after serving as the first female and African American president and CEO of Morgan Memorial Goodwill Charities, Inc.

Favorite Color

Pink

Brent L. Henry

Lawyer Brent L. Henry was born on October 9, 1947 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He graduated in 1969 with his A.B. degree from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. Then, in 1973, he graduated with his M.A. degree in urban studies from Yale University and his J.D. degree from Yale Law School.

Upon graduation, Henry was hired at the law firm of Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue in Cleveland, Ohio where he worked as an associate for four years before moving to New York City in 1978 to work in the administration of Mayor Ed Koch in the department of human resources where he directed New York City’s Medicaid program. Upon completing his tenure, Henry returned to Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue until 1983 when he accepted a position as chief of staff at the Greater Southeast Community Hospital system in Washington, D.C. In 1985, Henry left the hospital system to become vice president and general counsel of the D.C. based Medlantic Healthcare Group. Henry was then promoted in 1998 to senior vice president when Medlantic merged with the Helix Health System to form MedStar Health Group which became the largest healthcare network in the Mid-Atlantic region. In 2002, Henry moved to Boston, Massachusetts to serve as vice president and general counsel of the Partners Healthcare System, the largest hospital and physician’s network in Massachusetts where he oversaw the legal, internal audit, corporate compliance, and business ethics departments until 2017 when he retired.

Henry has been recognized by numerous professional organizations, including the American Bar Association, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice, and the New England Legal Foundation. In 1994, he was elected as the first African American president of the National Health Lawyers Association. In 1999, he was appointed as a charter trustee, and in 2011, he was elected vice chair of the board of trustees for Princeton University. In 2016, he chaired the Wilson Legacy Review Committee. Included in Henry’s board service are as director for the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital and Equality Asset Management.

Brent L. Henry was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on August 15, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.169

Sex

Male

Interview Date

8/15/2018

Last Name

Henry

Maker Category
Middle Name

L.

Occupation
Organizations
First Name

Brent

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

HEN08

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts

Favorite Quote

God Gave Us Two Ears And One Mouth, Try To Use Them In The Proportion In Which They Were Given.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Massachusetts

Birth Date

10/9/1947

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Boston

Country

United States of America

Favorite Food

N/A

Short Description

Lawyer Brent L. Henry (1947- ) served as vice president and general counsel of the Partners Healthcare System, the largest hospital and physicians network in Massachusetts and prior to that he served as senior vice president of MedStar Health Group.

Favorite Color

N/A

Dr. Ronald C. Childs

Surgeon Dr. Ronald C. Childs was born on December 25, 1957. Childs received his B.A. degree from Boston University in 1979, his M.D. degree from Howard University College of Medicine, in 1983, and completed his orthopedic surgery internship and residency in 1989 at Howard University Hospital. Later, Childs became a member in the Rush Medical College Spine Fellowship Program at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois.

On active duty in the United States Army where he served three years including a tour of duty in Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Storm, Childs became part of the U.S. Army Medical Corps. During this time, he conducted orthopedic and combat surgeries during the Persian Gulf War, and was stationed in both Germany and Saudi Arabia during the conflict.

In 1994, Childs joined Commonwealth Orthopedics and Rehabilitation, P.C. in Fairfax, Virginia as the medical group’s first spine surgeon where he specialized in minimally invasive spine surgery, anterior cervical micro-discectomy and cervical disc replacement. While working in Fairfax, Childs became the first surgeon to conduct the XLIF (extreme lateral inter-body fusion) surgical procedure. Childs served as chief of the orthopedics spine section at Inova Fairfax Hospital, medical co-director of the Inova Spine Institute, and chairman of the hospital’s spine and osteobiologics committee. He also served as chairman of the state’s Region II of the Workers Compensation Peer Review Board.

Childs was board certified and re-certified in 2001 2011, respectively by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery. He has been a fellow in the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the American College of Surgeons. He served as an active member in the North American Spine Society, the Old Dominion Medical Society, Fairfax Medical Society, and Society of Lateral Access Surgeons.

In 2015, Commonwealth and OrthoVirginia merged to become OrthoVirginia, with offices in Central and North Virginia, and Childs joined the group formally known West End Orthopedic Clinic (WEOC) which was renamed OrthoVirginia in 2011.

Childs has several patents pending in that area in the area of minimally invasive spinal surgery. In 2017, Childs applied for a patent after he developed a bone fixation device with DePuy Synthes. He was voted a “Top Doctor” in 2015, 2017 and 2018 by Washingtonian magazine and Northern Virginia Magazine.

Childs and his wife, Virginia have two children.

Dr. Ronald C. Childs was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on August 10, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.151

Sex

Male

Interview Date

8/10/2018

Last Name

Childs

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

C.

Occupation
Schools

Central High School

Boston University

Howard University

First Name

Ronald

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

CHI06

Favorite Season

Christmas

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts

Favorite Quote

Always Believe In Yourself.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

12/25/1957

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States of America

Favorite Food

Swordfish

Short Description

Surgeon Dr. Ronald C. Childs (1957- ) served as medical co-director of the Inova Spine Institute at Inova Fairfax Hospital, and also chairman of Spine and Osteobiologics committee. Childs has several patents pending in that area in the area of minimally invasive spinal surgery.

Employment

Ortho VA

Rush University Medical Center

U.S. Army

Howard University Hospital

Favorite Color

Blue

Damon Lester

Business executive Damon Lester was born on December 4, 1972 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Faith and Joe Lester. Lester graduated from St. Barbara Catholic School in 1986, in Philadelphia. Lester graduated from Archbishop John Carroll High School, in 1990, in Radnor, Pennsylvania. He received his B.S. degree in accounting in 1994 from Temple University, in Philadelphia.

Lester served as staff accountant at Milligan And Company, in Philadelphia, one of the largest minority-owned CPA firms in the United States from 1994 to 1998. Lester served as supervisor, audit at Gelman, Rosenberg & Freedman in Bethesda, Maryland, where he specialized in creating non-profit organizations through the World Bank and audited international offices of USAID-funded non-profits, from 1998 to 2002. Lester joined the National Association of Minority Auto Dealers (NAMAD) team as vice president of operations, in Largo, Maryland in 2002. The organization was developed to assist in promoting minority auto dealers in the United States. Lester was named president, National Association of Minority Automobile Dealers in 2006. Lester’s expertise and strategic relationships with major auto manufacturers positioned him as one of the nation’s leading authorities on consumer finance, entrepreneurship and economic diversity issues in the industry. Lester is credited for: his involvement in the Detroit Big Three automobile manufacturers’ request for US government financial relief and automobile industry revitalization in 2008; his assistance in negotiations between President Barack Obama’s Administration and the Auto Task Force to secure the Memorandum of Understanding with General Motors for “wind-down” dealers, and restructuring of the General Motors Corporation in 2009; as well as NAMAD representation in the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s bulletin of fair practices regarding automobile dealer financing and diversity in the automobile industry in 2013.

Included among Lester’s honors and awards, The Network Journal’s 40 Under Forty Achievement Award in 2009, the FMCRC John Gamboa Community Leadership Award in 2010, Rainbow/PUSH Coalition Emerging Leader Award in 2011, Uptown Professional, DC Catalyst Award in 2014, the Savoy Top 100 Black Executives in Corporate America in 2014, the Real Times Media Vanguard Award in 2016, MEA Magazine Automotive Executive of the Year in 2017, and the Carma Foundation Spotlight Award in 2018.

Lester has served on the board of directors for DC Central Kitchen, Americans Well-Informed on Automobile Retailing Economics (AWARE), and the Automotive Trade Association Executives (ATAE). He was the first African-American board member for AWARE.

Lester’s insight and opinions have been featured in dozens of media outlets including USA Today, National Public Radio, The Wall Street Journal, Black Enterprise Magazine, Network Business Journal, and The New York Times.

A life member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., Lester was involved with Rainbow /PUSH Coalition and the National Association of Black Accountants.

Lester has two sons, Jalen and Justin.

Damon Lester was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on June 23, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.134

Sex

Male

Interview Date

6/23/2018

Last Name

Lester

Maker Category
Marital Status

Divorced

Occupation
Organizations
Schools

Temple University

First Name

Damon

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

LES03

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Las Vegas

Favorite Quote

Living The Dream

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

12/4/1972

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States of America

Favorite Food

Pizza

Short Description

Business executive Damon Lester (1972- ) was named president of National Association of Minority Auto Dealers, an organization developed to assist in promoting minority auto dealers in the United States. He previously served as vice president of operations from 2002.

Favorite Color

Blue

Kevin Eubanks

Jazz musician Kevin Eubanks was born on November 15, 1957 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Vera Bryant Eubanks, a gospel and classical pianist and music teacher, and William Eubanks, a police officer and security manager for AT&T. As a young child, Eubanks was trained in piano and violin at the Settlement Music School in Philadelphia. He also studied jazz guitar with Ted Dunbar at Rutgers University. After graduating from Germantown High School in 1976, Eubanks earned his B.A. degree in composition from the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts in 1979.

Upon moving to New York City to pursue a career in music, Eubanks joined Art Blakey’s band, the Jazz Messengers, and started his own group, the Kevin Eubanks Quartet. In 1983, Eubanks released his first record, Guitarist, with Elektra Records, and the following year, he released his second album, Sundance, with GRP Records. Eubanks went on to release several albums with the label, including Opening Night in 1985, Face to Face in 1986, The Heat of Heat in 1987, Show Prophets in 1988, The Searcher in 1989, and Promise of Tomorrow in 1990. In 1992, Eubanks moved to Los Angeles to play as the guitarist on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. He released several additional albums with Blue Note Records, including Spirit Talk in 1993 and Live at Bradley in 1994. From 1995 to 2010, Eubanks was the band director of The Tonight Show’s band. He also signed with Insoul Records and released the albums Shine in 2002 and Slow Freight in 2003. After leaving The Tonight Show in 2010, Eubanks became the artistic director for the Thelonious Monk Institute's Jazz in the Classroom Program. With Mack Avenue Records, he recorded and released the albums Zen Food in 2010, The Messenger in 2012, and East West Time Line in 2017. Eubanks has recorded with jazz singers like Dianne Reeves, Terri Lyne Carrington, and Carmen Lundy.

Eubanks was an active member of the Artistic Advisory Panel of the BMI Foundation since 1999. He received an honorary doctorate degree from Berklee College of Music in 2006. In 2010, Eubanks was inducted into the Philadelphia Music Alliance’s Walk of Fame; and in 2014, he was awarded the Mark Twain Prize from PBS for his work on The Tonight Show.

Kevin Eubanks was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 19, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.050

Sex

Male

Interview Date

3/19/2018

Last Name

Eubanks

Maker Category
Occupation
Organizations
First Name

Kevin

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

EUB01

Favorite Season

Summer

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Anywhere Tropical

Favorite Quote

You're Beautiful All You Have To Do Is Stop Trying To Be.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

California

Birth Date

11/15/1957

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Los Angeles

Favorite Food

Any plant-based food

Short Description

Jazz musician Kevin Eubanks (1957-) was the band leader of The Tonight Show house band, and released over twenty albums.

Favorite Color

Blue and Sunset

Curtis H. Tearte

Business executive and consultant Curtis H. Tearte was born on September 18, 1951 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Gwendolyn Tearte and Curtis Tearte Sr. Tearte graduated from South Philadelphia High School in 1969, and received his B.A degree in African and African American Studies from Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts in 1973. He went on to earn his J.D. degree from the University of Connecticut School of Law in 1978. Tearte also studied political science and international affairs at Howard University and the University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School.

Tearte began his career in sales and marketing at International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) in 1979. From 2001 to 2004, Tearte served as the general manager of global public sector industries at IBM in Bethesda, Maryland. He was promoted to general manager of industry and systems growth initiatives in Somers, New York in 2005. In 2007, Tearte managed the sale of IBM Printing Systems to the Ricoh Company. Tearte became IBM’s worldwide general manager for the storage systems unit in 2009, where he led the sales team responsible for the success of IBM’s XIV disk system design. The following year, Tearte served as IBM’s managing director for the State of Georgia. In this role, he managed the largest infrastructure technology transformation in the United States, and oversaw the integration of IBM’s storage development and global sales teams. In 2012, Tearte and his wife, Jylla Moore Tearte, co-founded the Tearte Family Foundation, a nonprofit that provided scholarships, coaching, and mentoring to promising high school and college student. He served as its chief executive officer. In 2013, Tearte founded Tearte Associates, Inc., a firm that provided investment management and business consulting through the Tearte Family Foundation.

Tearte served on numerous boards, including the board of the University of Connecticut School of Law Foundation, the Brandeis Alumni Association board, as well as the board of trustees at Brandeis University, which he joined in 2014. Tearte also chaired the Southeast Advisory Committee of the Jackie Robinson Foundation.

Teatre is married to Jylla Moore Tearte. He has two daughters, Cherice Barr and Anjylla Foster.

Curtis H. Tearte was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 6, 2018.

Accession Number

A2018.032

Sex

Male

Interview Date
3/6/2018
Last Name

Tearte

Maker Category
Middle Name

H.

Schools
South Philadelphia High School
Brandeis University
University of Connecticut School of Law

Howard University

First Name

Curtis

Birth City, State, Country

Philadelphia

HM ID

TEA02

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Pennsylvania

Favorite Vacation Destination

Laguna Beach, California

Favorite Quote

You See Things And You Say Why? I Dream Things That Never Were And Say Why Not?

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Birth Date

9/18/1951

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Favorite Food

Salmon and Grouper

Short Description

Business executive and consultant Curtis H. Tearte (1951 - ) was a senior executive at IBM for over thirty years, and the co-founder of the Tearte Family Foundation and Tearte Associates.

Employment
IBM
Tearte Family Foundation
Tearte Association Inc.
Favorite Color

Purple & Blue