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Martin Kilson

Professor Martin Kilson was born on February 14, 1931 in East Rutherford, New Jersey to Reverend Martin Kilson and Louisa Kilson. After his family’s move to Ambler, Pennsylvania, Kilson attended Ambler High School, graduating from there as an honor student in 1948. He then attended Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, where he studied under then university president Dr. Horace Mann Bond. Graduating as class valedictorian, Kilson received his B.S. degree in political science in 1953, and was awarded a John Hay Whitney Fellowship to study at Harvard University, where he earned his Ph.D. degree in political science in 1959.

After finishing his doctorate degree, Kilson spent eighteen months conducting field research in West Africa under a Ford Foundation Fellowship. He then returned to Harvard as a research associate in the Center for International Affairs, and was appointed lecturer in Harvard’s Department of Government in 1962. As one of only two African American junior faculty members at Harvard, Kilson also served as the faculty advisor for the newly founded Harvard-Radcliffe Afro-American Students Association during the 1960s. In 1966, he published his first book, Political Change in a West African State: A Study of the Modernization Process in Sierra Leone, based on his field research in Sierra Leone. In 1969, Kilson became a full professor of government at Harvard College, making him the first African American professor to gain tenure there. A recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship in 1975, Kilson was instrumental in the development of African American studies both as an academic discipline and as a department at Harvard University. He was appointed the Frank G. Thomson Professor of Government in 1988, a position he held until his retirement in 1999.

In addition to authoring hundreds of academic articles, Kilson also served as a co-editor of numerous essay collections, including The African Diaspora: Interpretive Essays, which was the first published work to use the term “African diaspora.” He returned to Harvard to deliver the annual W.E.B. DuBois lectures in 2010, and published his book, The Transformation of the African American Intelligentsia, 1880-2012, in 2014.

Kilson and his wife, Marion Dusser de Barenne Kilson, have three children: Jennifer, Peter, and Hannah.

Martin Kilson was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on October 22, 2016.

Accession Number

A2016.103

Sex

Male

Interview Date

10/22/2016

Last Name

Kilson

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

L.

Schools

Lincoln University

Harvard University

First Name

Martin

Birth City, State, Country

East Rutherford

HM ID

KIL02

Favorite Season

Spring and Fall

State

New Jersey

Favorite Vacation Destination

New Hampshire Summer House

Favorite Quote

Hard Work And Discipline Produce Good Results.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Massachusetts

Birth Date

2/14/1931

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Boston

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Okra

Short Description

Professor Martin Kilson (1931- ) was the first African American tenured professor at Harvard University, where he taught for forty-two years. He retired in 1999 as the Frank G. Thomson Professor of Government.

Employment

Harvard University

Favorite Color

Blue

Melissa Harris-Perry

Television host and political science professor Melissa Victoria Harris-Perry was born on October 2, 1973 in Seattle, Washington. Her father, William M. Harris, Sr., was the first dean of African American Affairs at the University of Virginia; her mother, Diana Gray, primarily worked for nonprofit organizations, colleges, and state government agencies. Harris-Perry was raised in both Charlottesville and Chesterfield County, Virginia, and attended Thomas Dale High School. She received her B.A. degree in English from Wake Forest University in 1994 and her Ph.D. degree in political science from Duke University in 1999. She also studied theology at Union Theological Seminary in New York.

Harris-Perry first taught at the University of Chicago, and then as an associate professor in the department of Politics at Princeton University. In 2011, she was hired as a professor of political science at Tulane University, where she also founded the Anna Julia Cooper Project on Gender, Race, and Politics in the South. In 2012, she became host of “Melissa Harris-Perry” on MSNBC. In July of 2014, Harris-Perry returned to her alma mater, Wake Forest University, where she was named the presidential chair professor of politics and international affairs. She also directs the Anna Julia Cooper Center at Wake Forest University.

Harris-Perry’s 2004 book, Barbershops, Bibles, and BET: Everyday Talk and Black Political Thought, won the 2005 W. E. B. Du Bois Book Award from the National Conference of Black Political Scientists and 2005 Best Book Award from the Race and Ethnic Politics Section of the American Political Science Association. She released her second book, Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America, in 2011. She has also been published in scholarly journals and edited volumes, and authored a monthly column entitled “Sister Citizen” for The Nation magazine.

In 2009, Harris-Perry became the youngest scholar to deliver the W.E.B. Du Bois Lectures at Harvard University. Also, in 2009, she delivered the prestigious Ware Lecture, becoming the youngest woman to ever do so. Harris-Perry served as a trustee of The Century Foundation and sat on the advisory board for Chef's Move!. She has received honorary doctorate degrees from Meadville Lombard Theological School and Eckerd College.

Harris-Perry is married to James Perry, and is the mother of two daughters, Parker and Anna James.

Melissa Harris-Perry was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on September 12, 2014.

Accession Number

A2014.203

Sex

Female

Interview Date

9/12/2014

Last Name

Harris-Perry

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

Victoria

Schools

Thomas Dale High School

Wake Forest University

Duke University

Union Theological Seminary

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Melissa

Birth City, State, Country

Seattle

HM ID

HAR47

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Washington

Favorite Vacation Destination

Barcelona, Spain

Favorite Quote

The Struggle Continues

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

North Carolina

Birth Date

10/2/1973

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Winston-Salem

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Red Velvet Cake

Short Description

Television host and political science professor Melissa Harris-Perry (1973 - ) is the host of MSNBC’s “Melissa Harris-Perry” and the presidential chair professor of politics and international affairs at Wake Forest University. She founded the Anna Julia Cooper Project on Gender, Race, and Politics in the South and has authored two books: Barbershops, Bibles, and BET: Everyday Talk and Black Political Thought, and Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America.

Employment

University of Chicago

Princeton University

Tulane University

MSNBC

Wake Forest University

The Nation Magazine

Favorite Color

Tiffany Blue

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Melissa Harris-Perry's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Melissa Harris-Perry lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her family's history of polygamy as well as her parents' previous marriages

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her family and godmother

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes the sights, sounds, and smells of her childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her family's Christmas traditions

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her childhood experience in the Unitarian Universalist Church

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her childhood understanding of her own racial identity

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her current occupation

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about the relationships between her mother, father, and godmother

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about how her white stepsister experienced racism because of Harris-Perry's mixed race

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Melissa Harris-Perry shares the lessons she learned from her father, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Melissa Harris-Perry shares the lessons she learned from her father, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her relationship with her father, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her relationship with her father, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her relationship with her white stepsister

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her teachers, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her teachers, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about what she wanted to be as a child

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her decision to attend Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes what influenced her feminism

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her experience at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes enrolling at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina for graduate school

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her doctoral dissertation and her first book

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about establishing the NIA House at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes how her feminism changed her identity as a black nationalist

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her experience as a rape survivor

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her friendship with Blair Kelley and teaching at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her experience as an assistant professor at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes the beginning of her career in the media

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her career as an academic at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois and at Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her mother's role in helping to raise her daughter

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her experience at Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her experience at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Melissa Harris-Perry describes her experience at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, New York

DASession

1$1

DATape

1$4

DAStory

11$5

DATitle
Melissa Harris-Perry talks about her childhood understanding of her own racial identity
Melissa Harris-Perry describes her career as an academic at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois and at Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey
Transcript
Now, can you talk a little bit more about that? You grew up in a home with a white mother [Diana Gray] and a white sister [Elizabeth] and African American you in the South [Charlottesville, Virginia]. How did your identity form as a young girl?$$And, I also just don't want to miss that at every point also visiting the black home of my dad [William M. Harris, Sr.], who had this very, very strong, I mean who was college roommates with Stokely Carmichael. They lived on the same hall at Howard [University in Washington, D.C.] and, you know again, who had been at the March on Washington and saw himself as a community organizer and, who also, you know my relationship, my parents' relationship was often marked my race in some really important ways in that my dad constantly was-- had a lot of anxiety about his black child being raised by a white woman and so my mother was very open to--"Okay, so what do I need to do?"--and my dad was very open to telling her-"this is what you need to do." The most important things that my mom did, I think, around my racial identity, or both of my parents, is there was not, in the 1970s, a notion of biracial identity. There is now. It took me a long time to understand that because race is socially constructed that I have to accept other interracial young people. They really do experience themselves as biracial. I do not. I experience myself as a black person with a white parent, and that is because from the beginning that is always how I was described to myself, how my family described me; just, the notion, "biracial" was not a word that was used. But also, my mother was very concerned that we live in a community that had many African Americans; again, I went to Jackson Via [Elementary School in Charlottesville, Virginia], named after two black women, and it was a predominantly black elementary school, as well as my middle school; maybe not predominantly black, but certainly more than 1/3. I had black child care providers all through my baby years, who helped to teach my mom how to do my hair and my mom was extraordinary. She could corn row my hair in extremely fancy styles and beads on the ends, and you know even the little, like, you put the tin foil on the end to keep the beads, my mom did all of that. And those were very self-conscious decisions made by my parents, sometimes thought out by my parents, about making sure that I was constantly understanding myself as a little black girl, and so I did. And, there was never, whether that was bad or good, it certainly was very straight forward. There wasn't a space for a crisis of identity there.$So, what are you doing academically as you are building this media profile for yourself?$$Oh, working on the next book. So, the first book ["Barbershops, Bibles, and BET"] is, you know, out of the dissertation and it's about, you know, black folks disagreeing. I am writing articles along because, you know, you just, just trying to tenure (laughter). That's what that goal is. So, tenure is always, you know, you must get the second book. So, I mentioned I went through a very painful divorce, my daughter not even two years old when my husband [Dennis Lacewell] left. The financial circumstances of suddenly becoming a single parent and, so I decided to write a book about black women this time and, at this point, I have really much more clearly solidified my identity as a feminist. I am working very closely with Cathy Cohen. She has at that point, taken over leadership of the Race Center [Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois]. I am on the Board of the Race Center at Chicago. We are pushing the administration to give us a building and postdocs. I am running that workshop. I am also running a workshop on race and religion. I am running another workshop on political psychology. I am engaging across fields. I am giving tons of lectures around the country--although not nearly as many as I give now--but it felt like a lot, especially as a single parent at the time, and I am working on this book about black women and the idea of the strong, black woman and the challenges around the notion of the strong black woman, collecting tons of data, I am doing experiments. I am teaching that high school class with the Kenwood Academy [High School in Chicago, Illinois] kids, and I am very much trying to build a life as a Chicago intellectual, and then I have lunch with one of my white male senior colleagues in the political science department and I tell him about my new book project, which I am really excited about, and he says, "Well, that's not very interesting. I'm not sure that you'll be able to get tenure with that." And I thought, okay, okay, I'm okay. I'm just going to go to Cathy and we'll go to Michael [Dawson] and they're going to tell me that they got me. It's going to be all right. So, I go to Cathy and I go to Michael and I was like, "Okay, this is what the senior colleague told me, but you got me right?" And they were like "Well....I don't know, maybe, it's really hard to just have you. We are sort of governed by consensus and I think a lot of people are going to think that" and I was like (gasp) Oh my God! I might not get tenure. I might not get tenure and I'm divorced and I have a baby, and I am working my butt off and I don't know what to do and I, I freaked out. So, I did what all people who freak out do. I went to Princeton [Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey]. (laughter). And, I spent a semester as a visiting professor at Princeton and built my relationships there. I was offered tenure in both the politics department there, and I never came up for tenure in Chicago, so I don't know whether I would have gotten tenure in Chicago or not. I was too freaked out after that. Found another route, and headed off to New Jersey.

Anthony Samad

Author, columnist and professor Anthony Asadullah Samad was born in 1957 in Brooklyn, New York. He graduated from California State University in Los Angeles with his B.A. degree in communications in 1980. Samad went on to receive his M.P.A degree in public finance from the University of Southern California in 1983.

From 1980 until 1984, Samad worked as a branch manager of Beneficial Finance. In 1984, he was hired as the vice president of Founders Savings, and, from 1985 to 1990, he served as president of Liberty Finance Management. Then, in 1991, Samad founded Samad and Associates, a strategic planning and urban affairs firm specializing in the assessment and management of public policy, economic development, urban, social and race issues. In 1996, he was hired by the Los Angeles Community College District, where he currently serves as a professor of political science and African American studies. From 1997 to 2007, he attended Claremont Graduate University, where he received his second M.A. degree in political economy, and then his Ph.D. degree in political science.

Samad has authored five books: Souls for Sale: The Diary of an Ex-Colored Man (2002); 50 Years After Brown: The State of Black Equality in America (2005); Saving The Race: Empowerment Through Wisdom (2007); REAL EYEZ: Race, Reality and Politics In 21st Century Popular Culture (2012); and March On, March On Ye Mighty Host: The Comprehensive History of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. (1914-2013) (2013). From 2007 until 2011, he served as the publisher of Who’s Who In Black Los Angeles. Samad has also been a syndicated columnist, and an opinion leader, publishing articles in newspapers and websites nationwide.

Samad has membership in the Phi Beta Sigma and Sigma Pi Phi fraternities, and has served as a past master of Free and Accepted Masons, Prince Hall Affiliation. He has also been involved with the American Political Science Association and the National Association of Black Journalists. Samad was the Los Angeles NAACP branch president from 1988 to 1989, and, since 1999, he has served as the managing director and host of the Urban Issues Forum of Greater Los Angeles, a monthly public affairs forum that discusses critical issues impacting urban communities. He also served as the president and chairman of the board of 100 Black Men of Los Angeles, Inc. from 2007 to 2009.

Samad has received over 200 awards and citations for his community advocacy work, including elevation to the 33rd and last degree in 1994, the prestigious 2007 Drum Major Award from the Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Greater Los Angeles, and 2008’s Member of the Year from the 100 Black Men of Los Angeles.

Anthony Asadullah Samad was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on November 16, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.294

Sex

Male

Interview Date

11/16/2013

Last Name

Samad

Maker Category
Marital Status

Divorced

Middle Name

Asadullah

Schools

Claremont Graduate University

California State University, Los Angeles

University of Southern California

Los Angeles High School

24th Street Elementary School

P.S. 124 Silas B. Dutcher School

John Adams Middle School

First Name

Anthony

Birth City, State, Country

New York

HM ID

SAM05

Favorite Season

Summer

State

New York

Favorite Vacation Destination

Anywhere

Favorite Quote

God Doesn’t Put Any More On You Than You Can Bear

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

California

Birth Date

3/11/1957

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Los Angeles

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Pasta

Short Description

Journalist and political science professor Anthony Samad (1957 - ) authored numerous political columns and scholarly publications, including '50 Years After Brown: The State of Black Equality in America.' He also founded the Urban Issues Forum of Greater Los Angeles.

Employment

Los Angeles Community College District

Samad & Associates

Freelance Journalist

Liberty Finance Management

Founders Savings & Loan

Beneficial Financial Company

California State University, Northridge

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Anthony Samad's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Anthony Samad lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Anthony Samad describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Anthony Samad describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Anthony Samad describes his father's education

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Anthony Samad talks about his parents' marriage

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Anthony Samad remembers lessons from his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Anthony Samad describes his community in Brooklyn, New York

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Anthony Samad describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Anthony Samad describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Anthony Samad recalls moving to Los Angeles, California

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Anthony Samad remembers his first impressions of California

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Anthony Samad remembers the Watts riots in Los Angeles, California

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Anthony Samad describes the impact of the Watts riots

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Anthony Samad describes his early educational experiences

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Anthony Samad talks about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Anthony Samad talks about his early admiration of Thurgood Marshall

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Anthony Samad remembers his family's involvement with the NAACP

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Anthony Samad talks about his love of reading

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Anthony Samad talks about his middle school gym teachers

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Anthony Samad talks about his favorite athletes

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Anthony Samad talks about his high school basketball career

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Anthony Samad remembers Los Angeles High School in Los Angeles, California

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Anthony Samad talks about his early awareness of black politics

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Anthony Samad remembers his college recruitment offers

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Anthony Samad recalls the development of his political consciousness, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Anthony Samad recalls the development of his political consciousness, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Anthony Samad talks about the Basic Educational Opportunity Grant

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Anthony Samad remembers joining the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Anthony Samad recalls his decision to study broadcasting

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Anthony Samad talks about the changes in black identity during the 1970s

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Anthony Samad recalls his mentors at California State University, Los Angeles

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Anthony Samad remembers earning a master's degree in public administration

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Anthony Samad recalls founding the Liberty Finance Management Group

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Anthony Samad recalls his introduction to the Nation of Islam

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Anthony Samad talks about police violence against African Americans

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Anthony Samad recalls his election as president of the NAACP Los Angeles Branch

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Anthony Samad describes his challenges as president of the NAACP Los Angeles Branch, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Anthony Samad describes his challenges as president of the NAACP Los Angeles Branch, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Anthony Samad talks about a personal scandal, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Anthony Samad talks about a personal scandal, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Anthony Samad recalls the start of his career as a newspaper columnist

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Anthony Samad recalls his conversion to Islam and return to Los Angeles

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Anthony Samad describes the work of Samad and Associates

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Anthony Samad remembers his consulting clients

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Anthony Samad remembers the riots in Los Angeles, California in 1992

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Anthony Samad describes the aftermath of the Los Angeles riots of 1992

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Anthony Samad remembers the O.J. Simpson trial, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Anthony Samad remembers the O.J. Simpson trial, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Anthony Samad remembers becoming a political science professor

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Anthony Samad recalls founding the Urban Issues Forum of Greater Los Angeles

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Anthony Samad remembers the speakers at the Urban Issues Forum of Greater Los Angeles

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Anthony Samad talks about the structure of the Urban Issues Forum of Greater Los Angeles

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Anthony Samad reflects upon the importance of the Urban Issues Forum of Greater Los Angeles

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Anthony Samad remembers earning his Ph.D. degree

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Anthony Samad describes the social regression that followed the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Anthony Samad talks about his book, 'Saving the Race, Daily Affirmations for Young Black Males'

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Anthony Samad describes his recent publications

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Anthony Samad talks about the history of the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, pt. 1

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Anthony Samad talks about the history of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, pt. 2

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Anthony Samad describes his current book projects

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Anthony Samad reflects upon his life

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Anthony Samad describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Anthony Samad talks about his family

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Anthony Samad reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Anthony Samad describes how he would like to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$4

DAStory

4$4

DATitle
Anthony Samad talks about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Anthony Samad talks about police violence against African Americans
Transcript
Let me go back a little bit to the assassinations of Malcolm X and Dr. King [Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.].$$ Okay.$$And I have a note here that both of those assassinations affected you when you were young. So, well tell us about--what did you know about Malcolm X when you were growing up?$$ I had heard of Malcolm X, but I have no recollection of hearing about his assassination at the time that it happened. I remember talking about it and hearing about it maybe a year or two later as the pro black radical movement began to take hold in Los Angeles [California] and the Panther [Black Panther Party] movement became significant in Los Angeles. Then I would hear references to Malcolm X and they killed Malcolm that kind of thing. However, the two most significant generational effects of my life happened November 22nd, 1963, and April 4th, 1968. I remember both of those days like they happened yesterday. It was like the world stopped. I remember them letting out school. I was still in New York [New York] when President Kennedy [President John Fitzgerald Kennedy] was killed. I remember the principal coming over the loud speaker and saying, telling the teachers that school is being dismissed, that the children's parents will pick them up outside [of P.S. 124, Silas B. Dutcher School, Brooklyn, New York]. I remember going outside and seeing our parents lined up on the curb and mothers crying and that kind of thing and then the teachers whispering to one another and then the teachers started crying. And then when I got home, that's when my mother [Margaret Davis] told me that the president had been killed. On the day that Martin Luther King was killed, I remember a very, very loud reaction. It was like the whole community came out on their lawns. Everybody ran out of their house screaming, "They killed him." At that point, we lived on Hobart [Boulevard], and it was like the neighborhood mourned together and it was something that I had never experienced, not even with the Kennedy death. I'd been blessed in my family not to have a lot of death. The first death that I was exposed to was the passing of my grandfather on my father's side [John Essex, Jr.], and he died around 1965, '66 [1966], and it, it was, you know, he seemed old so it seemed like just a natural course of life, but you know to see someone in the prime of their lives cut down as Kennedy and King were that brought a different social reality to me that people who do good assume some risks and those risks include death. And this is where you begin now to have conversations with your peers. Generally anytime death is mentioned in your family, it's usually by an older person trying to sit down and console or explain that grandma went to heaven, grandpa went to heaven, that kind of thing. But, to be indoctrinated to political assassinations, you know, I was twelve years old, thirteen years old when King was killed. So before you have reached pub- puberty, you have this political reality as a child that in America death can come upon you for speaking truth to power or for trying to do the right thing or just for being African American in some parts of the country was a sobering reality. It was one that really kind of shaped my worldview.$How were the first few years of Liberty Finance Management [Liberty Finance Management Group, Los Angeles, California]? How--?$$ It was, it was actually good. It allowed me to sustain myself. I will say that I probably never really gave it my full attention because it was at that time I also took a position, an officer's position, in the Los Angeles NAACP [NAACP Los Angeles Branch, Los Angeles, California] in 1986. So, it allowed me to take care of my family and while I pursued my community activism. That was the beginning of my real community activism.$$Okay, now what was the Los Angeles NAACP like when you joined? Who was in it and what were the issues?$$ I became a part of a new wave of leaders. The branch had pretty much died. I mean they had very, very few members, and there was a gentleman by the name of John McDonald who was responsible for revitalizing the NAACP. And the revitalization of the NAACP was phenomenal 'cause he brought a lot of young people including myself to the branch, and he grew the branch from nearly eight hundred members to almost fifteen thousand members. John McDonald passed away in December of 1986 [sic. 1985] at the age of thirty-five. He died of a heart attack at Christmastime.$$This is in 19--?$$ Eighty-six [1986].$$Eighty-six [1986], okay so this is shortly after he brought you in.$$ Yeah, after he pulled me in. So, all of us basically took an oath to stay engaged and try to, you know, keep John's dream alive. And this was also the period of time in which you began to see a significant shift in Los Angeles [California] in terms of the way police were treating people. Police abuse and misconduct was on the rise. We had a police chief by the name of Daryl Gates who essentially took a paramilitary stand against the black community. You know he created this thing called the battering ram. You began to see the vestiges of the cocaine and the crack movement began to come into the African American community and so, and then you began to see the rise of the black gang movement in the black community.$$Now this is, this is an era when out on the East Coast crack cocaine was coming into Washington, D.C., you know some of the East Coast cities. It hadn't reached Chicago [Illinois] yet, but was it doing the same thing on the West Coast?$$ Yeah, it was just beginning to creep in. It, it probably took five years to take hold, so by the early '90s [1990s] it was here, but you, you could see the vestiges of it in '86 [1986], '87 [1987], '88 [1988] and so you began to see LAPD [Los Angeles Police Department] take a more aggressive position. So, as vice president of the NAACP, I took on major issues with respect to economic discrimination and police abuse.$$Okay, LAPD has a long history of antagonism--$$ Oh yeah.$$--with people of color in Los Angeles.$$ Oh going back to the 1920s you know.$$Right.$$ In almost every riot whether it was the black community or Latino community, because remember the zoot suit riots occurred in the 1930s [sic. 1943], and I think that you know even though the Watts riots of '65 [1965] were oftentimes seen as the flashpoint of police misconduct, there had been many, many riots in Los Angeles and when I say many riots you know small conflicts with the police that didn't blow up into full scale riots.$$Yeah, not the, you know--$$ Earlier than 1965, way earlier.$$There's the photo of Malcolm X with a picture of a brother that was shot.$$ Well when the, the, when the police attacked the mosque [Mosque No. 27; Temple No. 27, Los Angeles, California] in 1962 and then of course they attacked the Panthers [Black Panther Party] in 1970 on, on 41st [Street] and Central [Avenue]. They shot out the, the Panther office, you know so, you know they, they have been very aggressive. In the 1980s, they, they had become paramilitary, you know, because Daryl Gates is the police chief responsible for creating SWAT [Special Weapons and Tactics], you know which is, you know the marksmen teams that you know take out snipers and those kinds of things, but that whole set up was perfected on the black community; you know it was perfected on the black community.

Paula McClain

Political science professor and public policy professor Paula D. McClain was born on January 3, 1950 in Louisville, Kentucky to Mabel T. Molock and Robert Landis McClain. After graduating from East Anchorage High School in Anchorage, Alaska in 1968, McClain enrolled at Howard University. In 1970, McClain served as a program coordinator for the National Coordinating Council on Drug Abuse Education and Information. She interned in 1971 with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s Office of Compliance where she briefed and researched violations of discrimination in the utility of industry. McClain received her B.A. degree in political science from Howard University in 1972. She went on to pursue graduate education at Howard University, finishing her M.A. degree in political science in 1974.

McClain then worked as a consultant for Adaptive Systems in Annapolis, Maryland and the Social Science Research Center at Howard University. By 1977, she had also completed her Ph.D. degree from Howard University, and began teaching at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) in political science studies and African American Studies. McClain published her first book Alienation and Resistance: The Political Behavior of Afro-Canadians while at UWM. McClain received a postdoctoral fellowship and worked as a research associate in the Analysis Center at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in the 1980-81 academic year. She then began teaching at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona in the School of Public Affairs. By 1990, McClain was serving as the acting director for the Doctorate of Public Administration Program. Also in 1990, McClain and Harold M. Rose released Race, Place, and Risk: Black Homicide in Urban America. The book was awarded the National Conference of Black Political Scientists' Best Book Award for a previously published book that has made a substantial and continuing contribution. In 1991, McClain joined the faculty at the University of Virginia as a professor of government and foreign affairs. She served as department chair from 1994-1997. In 1995, McClain released the first edition of Can We All Get Along? Racial and Ethnic Minorities in American Politics, which won the Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Human Rights in North America Award for Outstanding Scholarship in the Subject of Intolerance.

In 2000 McClain joined the faculty at Duke University as a professor of political science and professor or public policy. In 2001, she began The Durham Pilot Project, examining racial attitudes among blacks, whites and Latinos in the South. While working on this project, she became the third woman and the first African American elected to serve as Chair of Academic Council at Duke University (2007-2009). Since 2004, she has served as co-director of the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Gender in the Social Sciences. She also is the director the Ralph Bunche Summer Institute, a program of the American Political Science Association that is hosted by Duke and funded by the National Science Foundation. McClain and her husband Paul Jacobson have two daughters, Kristina L. McClain-Jacobson Ragland and Jessica A. McClain-Jacobson.

Paula McClain was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on February 22, 2012.

Accession Number

A2012.069

Sex

Female

Interview Date

2/22/2012

Last Name

McClain

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

East Anchorage High School

Colonel Young Elementary School

Colonel Johnson Middle School

Buena High School

University of Michigan

First Name

Paula

Birth City, State, Country

Louisville

HM ID

MCC13

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Kentucky

Favorite Vacation Destination

Paris, France

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

North Carolina

Birth Date

1/3/1950

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Durham

Country

United States

Favorite Food

None

Short Description

Political science professor and public policy professor Paula McClain (1950 - ) was a professor at Duke University, where she founded the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Gender in the Social Sciences. Her publications included the popular textbook 'American Government in Black and White.'

Employment

Duke University

Arizona State University

University of Virginia

University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Howard Pollock Congressional Office

Birch Bayh Senatorial Office

National Coordinating Council on Drug Abuse

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Wharton School Analysis Center

Favorite Color

Purple

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Paula McClain's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Paula McClain lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Paula McClain describes her mother's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Paula McClain describes her mother's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Paula McClain describes her father's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Paula McClain describes her father's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Paula McClain talks about how her parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Paula McClain talks about her paternal family's connection to Houston A. Baker, Jr.

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Paula McClain recalls her father's service in the U.S. Army

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Paula McClain describes her parents' personalities and who she takes after

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Paula McClain talks about her time in Anchorage, Alaska

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Paula McClain describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Paula McClain remembers her schooling

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Paula McClain remembers her early mentors

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Paula McClain describes the African American community in Anchorage, Alaska

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Paula McClain talks about her decision to attend Howard University

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Paula McClain talks about her decision to enroll at Howard University

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Paula McClain remembers the assassination of Revered Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Paula McClain talks about her family's religious affiliations

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Paula McClain recalls her internships on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Paula McClain remembers her professors at Howard University, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Paula McClain recalls her internships on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Paula McClain remembers her internship at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Paula McClain remembers the visiting speakers at Howard University

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Paula McClain describes her experiences at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Paula McClain remembers her professors at Howard University, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Paula McClain describes her decision to pursue a Ph.D. degree at Howard University

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Paula McClain describes her master's thesis

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Paula McClain talks about the black community in Canada

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Paula McClain recalls the politics of the early 1970s

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Paula McClain remembers the Watergate scandal

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Paula McClain talks about her graduation from Howard University

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Paula McClain recalls her position at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Paula McClain talks about her studies at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Paula McClain describes her associate professorship at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Paula McClain talks about her book, 'Race, Place, and Risk,' pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Paula McClain talks about her book, 'Race, Place, and Risk,' pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Paula McClain talks about the prevention of black on black crime

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Paula McClain describes her reasons for leaving Arizona State University

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Paula McClain talks about her publications at the University of Virginia

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Paula McClain talks about her membership in the American Political Science Association

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Paula McClain describes her experiences at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Paula McClain talks about the Durham Pilot Program

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Paula McClain talks about the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Gender in the Social Sciences

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Paula McClain talks about her book, 'American Government in Black and White,' pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Paula McClain talks about her book, 'American Government in Black and White,' pt. 2

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Paula McClain talks about the history of democracy in Native American cultures

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Paula McClain talks about her current research projects

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Paula McClain describes her hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Paula McClain talks about the economic disparity within the African American community

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Paula McClain reflects upon the status of black women in academia

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Paula McClain reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Paula McClain reflects upon her life

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Paula McClain talks about her family

Tape: 7 Story: 9 - Paula McClain shares her advice to women in academia

Tape: 7 Story: 10 - Paula McClain describes how she would like to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

5$6

DAStory

4$5

DATitle
Paula McClain talks about her book, 'Race, Place, and Risk,' pt. 1
Paula McClain talks about the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Gender in the Social Sciences
Transcript
All right so, '89 [1989], let's see, okay with, with Harold Rose you released 'Race, Place, and Risk' (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Yeah, 'And Risk: Black Homicide in Urban America' ['Race, Place, and Risk: Black Homicide in Urban America,' Paula D. McClain and Harold Rose].$$Okay$$It was the first, well what--among the first in depth studies of black on black homicide, and we used five or six different cities; it was Detroit [Michigan], St. Louis [Missouri], Houston [Texas], L.A. [Los Angeles, California], but there were six cities, I'm blanking on, St. Louis, did I say St. Louis? But the causes and the factors that contributed to what we were seeing at that point was an increase on black on black violence and we had a lot of different--Harold as a res- Harold is just a creative researcher. We started with a, with a sample of victims which we got by ordering data from public health departments in the cities, the study ran from 1960 through '85 [1985], I believe, so we had about twenty-five years' worth of data and we ordered death certificates based on the health departments names and numbers of who died, I mean there's a difference, we didn't use the FBI [Federal Bureau of Investigation] statistics because if, if you look at 'em you have, you come up with two different numbers because the FBI has statistics on everybody who died within the city, and we were only interested in residents and county health departments only keep the stats of resident deaths I mean in terms of the ones that they report. So by starting with the city or county health department, then ordering death certificates for all of the people and then identifying the black victims, I mean it was just a real lot of detective work to kind of get to, once we got the victims sample, then we were able to find out whether anyone was ever arrested for the homicide and if they were what the dep- disposition of the case was. And so we had victim data, we got, if we could identify the offender and if they were incarcerated we got interviews, there, I actually did a series of interviews in, it's coming back to me, Jackson, which is the women's prison up in Michigan. Then once we, you know, then got data on the offenders, we got school data on the victims, I mean it was, it was just a massive effort and, an incr- an incredible study that really kind of talked about the various factors of why some cities looked like they were high homicide cities in the aggregate like Atlanta [Georgia]. But basically in Atlanta most of the homicides were domestic, so unless you were in that particular household, your risk of being a homicide victim was a lot lower than in a place like St. Louis where it was mostly unknown and on the street. So we identified all of these differences in the rate of black homicide and the factors that contributed to it.$$Is there a generalization that, that can be extrapolated from that research that could characterize black on black crime in--?$$I don't think, given the fact that we found differences among cities that there's one generalization that one can identify. But, what our work it was it spawned a lot of other work, you know? And there's lots of people now, lots of scholars who have done more work on black homicide and I no longer do that, I think the last piece Harold and I wrote was an update in '95 [1995], I believe on the cities--$$Okay.$$--that we had looked at.$Well tell us about the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Gender in the Social Sciences (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Sciences. My colleague, Kerry Haynie [Kerry L. Haynie], and I are the founding directors of the center, it's part of the Social Science Research Institute. And the focus is race and then ethnicity, because Latinos are not considered a race they can be of any race, but the [U.S.] Census Bureau considers them an ethnic group as opposed to a race, but even within the Asian American population, we use that broad term but there are various ethnic groups, various different groupings within the Latino population and even increasingly among the black population in the United States. With immigration it's still primarily like 94 percent slave descendent, but there's this increasing proportion of the black population of the United States that are Caribbean or of various African origins. And so that's the race and ethnicity in terms of the research, the gender is the intersection of race and gender, in literature, sociology is a little bit better, but in political science or whatever, when you talk about women in politics, all the research is on white women, when we talk about race, ethnicity and politics and we're talking about elected officials who are black or Latino, it's mostly male, research on black women in politics in, in organization, Latino women just get dropped out. So the gender in our center is about this interaction for women of color within these groups. So that the, the issues related to white women are not central to our study of gender but it's the gender of women of color, women of color interacting because that's where there's just a paucity of research.$$Okay.$$And we have a number of graduate students that are fellows in the center, we have a post doc [postdoctoral fellowship], we just had our distinguished lecture which was Ed Ayers [Edward L. Ayers], who's a civil, who's a historian, he's president of the University of Richmond [Richmond, Virginia], but he gave us, his lecture was on February 10th because this is, this is like the 150th anniversary of the Civil War and running up to the Emancipation Proclamation, and one of the things that that Ed was saying is that we really shouldn't separate the beginning of the Civil War from this emancipation because from the very beginning blacks were emancipating themselves whenever they knew that federal troops or anything were close that they would, they would take off. So we think about the Emancipation Proclamation as being some beginning point when in reality--$$Um-hm.$$--it was all part of the Civil War, you know. So, and we've got a number of visiting scholars that, that come to spend time. We've had a graduate student from France who spent a year with us, 'cause France doesn't identify issues of race. They've got a lot of racial issues, but they don't collect racial data, they don't wanna talk about it, there's no courses. So she came over here for a year and took some courses and wrote her master's [degree] thesis when she was with us so.$$Okay so, so does the future seem bright for the center?$$I hope so, I mean, you know, you're always--we go through three year budget cycles and so my hope is that in 2013 we'll get another three year budget cycle, you know, but right now things are good.$$Now there is, there has been some talk in academia and some action about rolling back such centers and African American studies departments and women's studies even and that sort of thing, especially with the tightening of budgets and--$$Um-hm.$$--you know, so that's, that's not a problem at, at Duke [Duke University, Durham, North Carolina] I don't think at this time?$$I don't think right now.$$Yeah.$$I think our centers are strong, the Department of African and African American Studies here is quite strong, it's got some very, very important and very solid scholars. So I think that national trend has not affected Duke, you know, but there's always issues, you're always concerned about protecting and making sure that commitment to these things doesn't fall through, you know, the cracks at Duke. And we've got a very active black faculty organization, the Black Faculty Caucus that tries to stay on top of these issues.

Dorothy Cowser Yancy

Johnson C. Smith University President Dorothy Cowser Yancy was born on April 18, 1944 in Cherokee County, Alabama to Linnie Bell Covington Cowser and Howard Cowser, a farmer. She was raised on the family farm once owned by her great-great grandfather. Upon graduation from Hatcher High School in 1960, Yancy entered Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina where she was a student activist in the Civil Rights Movement, holding memberships in the SGA, SCLC, and SNCC. She graduated from Johnson C. Smith University in 1964 with her B.A. degree in history. In 1964, Yancy entered the University of Massachusetts where she earned her M.A. degree in history. Simultaneously, she received a certificate in management development from Harvard University. In 1968, Yancy married Robert James Yancy, and in 1974, she entered the doctoral program in political science at Atlanta University where she became an accomplished scholar.

After receiving her Ph.D. degree from Atlanta University, Yancy sought post-graduate work at a variety of institutions including the University of Singapore, Hampton University, Northeastern Illinois University, Northwestern University, Georgia Tech University and the University of Illinois, Chicago. Yancy became a tenure-track professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1972 and served as professor of history, technology, and society and management. She became the first African American professor to be promoted and tenured as a full professor. She also served as Associate Director of the School of Social Sciences, and she remained at Georgia Tech until 1994, when she became the first female president of Johnson C. Smith University.

As president, Yancy doubled the University endowment to approximately $57 million and increased applications 300%. She also upgraded the technical capabilities of the school by ensuring that each undergraduate student receives an IBM Thinkpad upon entry through a lease program. During her presidency, Yancy became the first female board president of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association.

Yancy was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on June 20, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.180

Sex

Female

Interview Date

6/20/2007

Last Name

Yancy

Maker Category
Middle Name

Cowser

Schools

Hatcher High School

Savage Wood Elementary School

Johnson C. Smith University

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

University of Massachusetts Amherst

Clark Atlanta University

Northwestern University

Northeastern University

First Name

Dorothy

Birth City, State, Country

Cherokee County

HM ID

COW01

Favorite Season

Christmas, Thanksgiving

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

Spas

Favorite Quote

No Good Deed Will Go Unpunished.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Birth Date

4/18/1944

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

United States

Favorite Food

String Beans, Barbeque Ribs

Short Description

Political science professor and university president Dorothy Cowser Yancy (1944 - ) was the first female president of Johnson C. Smith University.

Employment

Johnson C. Smith University

Georgia Institute of Technology

Albany State College

Barat College

Hampton Institute

Favorite Color

Bright, Dark Colors

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Dorothy Cowser Yancy's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her parents' roots in Cherokee County, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her father's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about her white relatives

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her father's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her family's land in Cherokee County, Alabama

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about her early education

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her early interest in literature

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy remembers Hatcher High School in Centre, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy recalls segregation in Cherokee County, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about her parents' professions and siblings

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy remembers her sister's role at Hatcher High School in Centre, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes the racial tensions in Cherokee County, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her experiences at Hatcher High School in Centre, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about the segregation of schools in Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy recalls her paternal relatives who passed as white

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy remembers her arrival at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes the civil rights activities at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about her involvement in the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her experiences at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy recall her aspiration to attend graduate school

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about her experiences of racial discrimination

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy recalls her arrival at the University of Massachusetts Amherst

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her summer at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy remembers her decision to become a teacher

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her teaching position at Albany State College in Albany, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about her husband and daughter

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy recalls her doctoral studies at Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her courses at Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her work with the labor unions in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy recalls the impact of desegregation and the Vietnam War

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy recalls integrating the tenured faculty of the Georgia Institute of Technology

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her social life in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her role as an associate director at the Georgia Institute of Technology

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about The Links chapter in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her holiday celebrations

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy recalls how she became the president of Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy remembers her mentors at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her capital campaign at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes the laptop program at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes the use of technology at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about the security system at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes the international studies programs at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy remembers working with her former professors at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy reflects upon the traditions at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about her fundraising strategies

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes the social activities at Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about Johnson C. Smith University's donors

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about the Smith family's contribution to Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her decision to retire from Johnson C. Smith University

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about her involvement with the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her role at the United Negro College Fund

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy talks about returning home to Cherokee County, Alabama

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy reflects upon her life

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Dorothy Cowser Yancy reflects upon her legacy

DASession

1$1$1

DATape

3$5$1

DAStory

1$2$10

DATitle
Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes the civil rights activities at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina
Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her capital campaign at Johnson C. Smith University
Dorothy Cowser Yancy describes her early interest in literature
Transcript
You had mentioned the Civil Rights Movement, so when you got to Johnson C. Smith [Johnson C. Smith University, Charlotte, North Carolina] how did that manifest on campus?$$Well, you know, you have to remember now I came out of Alabama where the NAACP [National Association for the Advancement of Colored People] was illegal. We had had the Montgomery Bus Boycott, but in north Alabama, nothing had happened, not in the north Alabama where I lived. After I left home, there was a movement in Gadsden, Alabama and my cousins were involved in it and then my cousins integrated the Cherokee County High School [Centre, Alabama] after I left home. And eventually my sister [Evelyn Cowser] taught at the white high school. But when I left home, everything was still segregated. And so when I came here, and, and, and I knew about the sit-ins, I immediately began to participate 'cause it made a lot of sense to me.$$What were the organizations?$$Well, we just had a student government here on campus. And I remember Martin Luther King [Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.], you know, SNCCs [Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee], S--SCLC [Southern Christian Leadership Conference], SNCC and stuff like that. But we had a student organization. But see, I, I don't remember too much the stu- the, the SNCC and all that. I remember Dr. Hawkins [Reginald Hawkins]. There was a man here in town who was a dentist, who also had graduated from Johnson C. Smith Seminary [Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary, Atlanta, Georgia] and graduated from undergraduate school here. He led the movement in this town of students. And then we had student leaders, and I remember we had to go through this nonviolent training in the auditorium downstairs because you weren't supposed to spit back or hit back or anything like that. So I remember going through all of that before you went downtown to protest. But we used to go on Tuesdays and Thursdays, those were light teaching days. And the boys from Davidson [Davidson College, Davidson, North Carolina] would come over sometimes. But the Queens girls [Queens College; Queens University of Charlotte, Charlotte, North Carolina], I don't ever remember seeing them, although now they say they were in the movement. But I don't know anything about them. But I do remember the Davidson boys coming over. And we were--we were very active. We had Charlie Jones [Charles Jones] who was involved in SCL- was involved in SNCC, and Charlie ha- went on down to the protest in Mississippi and went on down to Albany, Georgia and places like that. And there were a few fellas out of the seminary, 'cause Charlie was in the seminary. It was--his mother was my English teacher. And Charlie used to write back letters telling us what was going on in the various southern towns that he was going, going through. And she would--we would go over them in class, in English class. And she would teach that along with 'The Iliad' [Homer] and 'The Odyssey' [Homer]. How she did it I will never know. Well, Ms. Jones was a wonder woman. She was considered to be a little fickle, you know, and quite avant garde, but she was one of the more exciting teachers I ever had. And she was fun and I kept her for two years of English, and I've always had the upmost respect for her.$$But she would teach the classics and then she would teach?$$And, and, and she would read Charlie's letters and somehow it would bring it into human rights and social justice. And we had--we had a teacher in religion whose name was Dr. Steele who believed that the Civil Rights Movement was sort of like God ordained. You know, if God was here, if Jesus was here he'd be in the movement too. And we had some very interesting religious--religion classes on social justice and the social gospel. Johnson C. Smith had an interesting social gospel that they taught at the seminary. And there's been a dissertation written on it about the social gospel that was taught in the seminary at Johnson C. Smith led by Algernon O. Steele. And it was--it was quite interesting because we knew that we were doing what God would've wanted us to do when we were protesting. And it was supported by the president and the faculty and everybody.$So, what was your plan of action when you got here, what did you wanna do?$$Well, the pla- when I got here, I walked into a capital campaign and the goal was $50 million. And so I had to raise the money. So I walked in and went to the capital campaign meeting and Ed Crutchfield who was the biggest banker in town head of First Union Bank [First Union Corporation; Wells Fargo and Company], and John Stedman [John B. Stedman, Jr.] who was the guru of fundraising here in town and the head of Duke Energy [Duke Energy Corporation] and Duke Power [Duke Power Company, Charlotte, North Carolina] at the time, and the head of the newspaper and the head of Lance [Lance, Inc.; Snyder's-Lance, Inc.]. That was my operating committee. I mean here are all these big dogs, you know, and here I am this kid who just walked out of the classroom. And so I'll never forget my first meeting. The--Ed Crutchfield was late. You know, Presbyterians are always on time. And then he looked at me and he says, "Well I don't know how we gonna tell the Johnson C. Smith story since Bob Albright [Robert Albright] has gone." And I remember looking at him, by now I'm really seething. I said, "Well I don't know what you are talking about, I am the damn story. And if I can't tell it, it can't be told. Bob Albright didn't go to Johnson C. Smith [Johnson C. Smith University, Charlotte, North Carolina]." And he and I hit it off just like that. And we've been friends ever since. And he helped--we work together. We met every three months and we raised that money.$$How long did it take you (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) We had sixty-three--in--in '98 [1998] we ended the campaign at $63.8 million. That's right.$$And you had more than doubled the endowment or?$$The endowment has gone from when I came here it was 13 something, and a few weeks ago it was 53 million, 'cause we just finished an--another campaign. It was 75 million and we've hit 80.6 million. So it's, it's, it's been interesting. So what you see around the campus, the new library, the new technology center, the renovation of this building, the track and academic complex, the renovation of the buildings, the air conditioning of all the dormitories. You know, the, the gr- I mean all the things you see around here are the things that we've done and the infrastructure. We've tried to, to improve upon what we found and just create a very good learning community, a place where students can come and learn and go out and be, be successful and main--major contributors to, to, to the universe. I mean, we, we wanna raise global students and I think we do that with our technology. I don't think our students would know what to do without having a laptop. They've all had one individually since 2000. And I think that's probably the, the connections that they made with the world is probably the best contribution or the major contributions of, of something I've given to them.$What was your favorite subject in school?$$Well, I liked math and I liked--I, I loved to read, that was, that was my favorite thing.$$What did you like to read, what books?$$Well, I loved to read anything. And I remember my favorite set of books, and you're probably gonna think I'm really nerdy now, was this set of Childcraft that the school [Savage Wood Elemenatary School, Cherokee County, Alabama] had. The little school had a set of Childcraft, I don't know who bought them. But when the school closed and my father [Howard Cowser] bought the school, we ended up with the whole set of Childcraft. And we used--I used to read all of the fairy tales and all of the stories. And then we would have, you know, they had that big long one, what volume thirteen and fourteen were the big long skinny ones, remember. And they had the--had all the wild animals and all this kind of stuff in it. And it was a really exciting book. And of course the story--the stories you don't tell those kind of stories to children anymore because the people got eaten up, you know. They had to--had to sort of make them socially acceptable in recent years. But I still--we still have that set in my parents' ho- house. But I used to just love to read anything. And then my mother [Linnie Covington Cowser] used to get Progressive Farmer, I know that's not gonna float your boat, but we used to--I used to read The Progressive Farmer, I used to read Reader's Digest, and then Reader's Digest had the books, novels that you could get. And then we use to get all the magazines and stuff. I, I, I would just read anything. But my favorite person that I loved to read about that my mother had difficulty with was Billie Holiday. I loved Billie Holiday. I thought she had the most beautiful voice in the world, but it was about the time that she was on drugs and my mother was just incensed that I wanted to read about this woman. So I would hide and read everything I could about Billie Holiday.

Willard Johnson

Willard R. Johnson is professor emeritus of political science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). For over thirty years (1964-1996), his academic focus was on international relations and development policies and institutions with an emphasis on Africa. Throughout his career, he combined scholarship and teaching with political activism. In addition to African studies and comparative politics, he devoted energy and time to the economic development of inner city America. Johnson was a core leader in the creation of TransAfrica, a national lobbying group for African liberation and support.

Johnson was born in 1935 in St. Louis, Missouri. Both of his parents were born in Kansas. His father was a bacteriologist with the U.S. Public Health Service, which led the family to move several times as his father’s career advanced. His family included a brother and twin sisters. They moved to Tuskegee, Alabama, and then to Pasadena, California, in 1946, where Johnson joined the Pasadena Boys’ Club. Johnson graduated from Muir High School in Pasadena and went on to receive his B.A. degree in international relations at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), where he was president of the student body during his senior year. At UCLA, he was a founding member of a chapter of the NAACP, which brought W.E.B. DuBois to the UCLA campus as a speaker. Johnson received his M.A. degree in African Studies with distinction from John Hopkins School of International Studies and his Ph.D. degree from Harvard University. His dissertation was on “Cameroon Reunification: The Political Union of Several Africas.” In 1964, he was appointed Assistant Professor of political science at MIT.

In 1966, Johnson returned to Cameron to extend his research and then turned his Harvard dissertation into a book, The Cameroon Federation, that was published by Princeton University Press. On leave from MIT from 1968 to 1970, he helped to establish and served as the executive director of a community-owned, non-profit economic development promotion complex, Circle, Inc., in Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood. Circle included a small business development center, an investment fund, a management-training institute and a consulting firm.

In 1972, Johnson directed the Africa Policy Task Force for the George McGovern for President committee. During the 1970s, he served on the Democratic Party Advisory Council’s Foreign Affairs Study Group. His earlier public service included two terms on the U.S. National Committee for UNESCO.

Johnson was one of the founders and senior advisors to the Boston Pan-African Forum, Inc. He led the Boston unit of TransAfrica in its “Free South Africa Movement” campaign, making the banning of South African Kruggerrand coins part of the anti-apartheid agenda of the U.S.

In 1991, Johnson founded and now directs the Kansas Institute for African American and Native American Family History (KIAANAFH). The Institute promotes the preservation, documentation and appreciation of family identity, traditions and achievements of members of African American and Native American communities of the Midwest. The Black History Bulletin (Jan. – Dec. 2001, Vol. 64) carries an article by Johnson on “The Great Escape” of Indians and Blacks into Kansas during 1861 and 1862.

Johnson co-authored with his wife, Dr. Vivian Johnson (whom he met as a UCLA student), West African Governments and Volunteer Development Organizations: Priorities for Partnership. The Johnsons, residents of Newton, Massachusetts, are the parents of two married daughters, Kimberley Johnson Ogadhoh, born in 1963, and Caryn Johnson, born in 1960.

Accession Number

A2005.260

Sex

Male

Interview Date

12/9/2005

Last Name

Johnson

Maker Category
Schools

John Muir High School

Harvard University

Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies

University of California, Los Angeles

Pasadena City College

First Name

Willard

Birth City, State, Country

St. Louis

HM ID

JOH26

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Missouri

Favorite Vacation Destination

Mexico, Caribbean

Favorite Quote

You Can Do Better.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Massachusetts

Birth Date

11/22/1935

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Boston

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Peas (Black-Eyed)

Short Description

Political science professor and genealogist Willard Johnson (1935 - ) was a core leader in the creation of TransAfrica, a national lobbying group for African liberation and support. He is professor emeritus of political science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the founder and director of the Kansas Institute for African American and Native American Family History.

Employment

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

MIT Center for International Studies

Center for African American Issues

The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy

The Circle, Inc.

Favorite Color

Brown

Timing Pairs
0,0:1906,34:5698,93:6093,99:6804,109:12650,255:22776,333:29996,450:32352,494:40070,567:40486,572:41942,594:42670,603:43294,611:57110,759:63742,860:71626,965:74509,1022:77113,1075:77950,1086:85584,1142:86656,1158:88063,1195:88532,1203:90207,1241:97950,1350:102690,1365:103330,1374:103890,1382:110740,1450:111172,1457:112828,1494:116664,1514:119750,1530:120560,1542:120920,1549:121460,1557:122270,1568:123530,1587:124250,1597:124880,1605:125240,1614:128015,1626:128475,1631:130602,1648:131114,1658:131690,1669:148274,1828:151062,1862:154014,1902:160295,1966:160750,1974:164520,2057:165495,2074:166470,2092:170305,2154:171800,2176:172580,2189:177340,2198:189480,2315:190728,2335:191430,2347:191898,2358:192210,2363:193068,2379:193926,2391:194472,2409:201455,2560:201755,2569:202205,2576:203030,2588:203780,2601:207898,2628:209970,2655:216038,2779:219664,2871:220108,2883:221366,2902:222106,2914:223660,2928:224030,2934:238622,3149:243160,3183:244000,3201:250266,3271:250700,3281:250948,3287:251258,3293:254358,3389:254792,3488:255722,3506:260090,3576$237,0:790,8:10586,321:13790,328:15464,346:16022,353:16673,362:17882,378:18533,387:19742,403:20300,410:20765,416:29894,539:30878,554:31698,566:32026,571:32764,581:41290,689:56502,940:57390,957:57982,967:58426,978:59314,994:59610,999:60720,1011:62866,1038:66204,1066:66468,1071:73488,1182:74192,1194:85498,1368:90466,1427:94170,1475:95130,1487:95610,1492:112086,1662:112814,1671:113438,1678:119210,1745:120960,1773:121240,1778:122570,1815:122990,1823:123480,1832:127400,1909:127680,1914:128380,1927:128660,1932:141230,2052:142760,2076:144020,2092:151346,2126:151822,2164:153114,2222:162934,2379:163322,2387:169045,2447:178130,2526:179575,2551:180595,2566:188245,2701:189010,2712:191220,2753:191815,2761:192495,2772:195642,2791:196290,2801:199348,2837:206550,2897:211989,2937:220600,3030:221040,3036:221392,3041:226080,3061:226584,3070:227016,3077:239850,3278:246830,3362:249679,3404:250218,3418:253210,3433:259548,3496:260604,3515:261132,3525:261858,3538:262122,3543:262650,3553:263046,3560:263508,3568:263970,3577:264762,3601:269278,3635:276730,3752:277054,3757:278512,3778:282287,3813:283598,3835:285166,3846:285598,3855:286606,3874:287110,3882:287398,3887:287686,3892:288046,3898:290134,3928:294640,3981
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Willard Johnson's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Willard Johnson lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Willard Johnson describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Willard Johnson describes his mother's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Willard Johnson describes his maternal grandfather's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Willard Johnson describes his maternal grandmother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Willard Johnson describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Willard Johnson describes his father's career

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Willard Johnson describes his paternal grandparents' family background, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Willard Johnson describes his paternal grandparent's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Willard Johnson describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Willard Johnson remembers his elementary school and George Washington Carver's funeral

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Willard Johnson recalls his move to Pasadena, California

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Willard Johnson recalls George Washington Junior High School and John Muir Junior College

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Willard Johnson describes his involvement with the Boys Club of Pasadena

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Willard Johnson describes his family's religious outlook

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Willard Johnson recalls influential teachers and mentors in Pasadena, California

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Willard Johnson describes his high school jobs and interest in political science

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Willard Johnson recalls the University of California, Los Angeles during the Cold War

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Willard Johnson recalls his campaign for student body president in college

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Willard Johnson describes his job at the National Student Association

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Willard Johnson describes his time at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and Harvard University

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Willard Johnson recalls his time in Cameroon, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Willard Johnson recalls his time in Cameroon, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Willard Johnson describes his positions at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Willard Johnson recalls the creation of the Circle, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Willard Johnson recalls receiving tenure at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Willard Johnson recalls his studies on the African-Arab Cooperation program

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Willard Johnson describes his work with the TransAfrica Forum

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Willard Johnson describes the African Heritage Studies Association

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Willard Johnson recalls launching TransAfrica as a general lobby in 1977

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Willard Johnson describes the movement to boycott the Krugerrand coin

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Willard Johnson remembers Nelson Mandela's visit to Boston

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Willard Johnson describes the Kansas Institute for African American and Native American Family History

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Willard Johnson reflects upon the connection between African Americans and Native Americans

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Willard Johnson describes the history of the Trail of Tears

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Willard Johnson talks about 'Tracing Trails of Blood on Ice,' pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Willard Johnson talks about 'Tracing Trails of Blood on Ice,' pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Willard Johnson reflects upon the Freedman Roll and black Native Americans

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Willard Johnson reflects upon his life

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Willard Johnson describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Willard Johnson describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Willard Johnson narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$4

DAStory

3$6

DATitle
Willard Johnson recalls his campaign for student body president in college
Willard Johnson recalls launching TransAfrica as a general lobby in 1977
Transcript
It was a kind of, they say, up to that point, it was kind of historic and there had been one black president before [at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Los Angeles, California], I think, named Sherrill Luke, who was pretty famous in the California area, but what made our, our campaign so important was that it was hard fought and that I brought in some new tactics. I went in, it's commuter campus right, so I went around and met every bus and, you know, at the edge of the parking lot all the students who were coming in as commuters, try to get this notion, we all have a right to live on campus, and I lost by twenty-seven votes, so I asked for a recount and they went through, you know, all these fanfare and it turns out I won by one vote in the recount. So then, that made the newspapers, you know. So then I said oh, no, that's no mandate. We going to hold this election all over again. So we held it all over again and then we had a record turn out and I won, landslide, not landslide, but significant, you know. And then I set out to try to change the culture of student government, so my thought was, and I wasn't alone in this, but, I mean you know, it was a serious effort in the '50s [1950s], you know, coming out of McCarthyism and sort of approaching the '60s [1960s], the '60s [1960s] hadn't burst on us yet, that we should approach student government as part of a governance of the university itself, and we should participate in the governance of the university, that we were not out of society, we were a part of society on campus and all the issues in society were our issues, and were proper with what should be within the purview of student government. So we took that position, sort of wrote that as our platform, and organized a student party and I ran with a group, a slate of people, as a party, but I was the only one on it to win, and that by, you know, by this little margin. So then we set out to restructure student government so that it would be on an academic basis and we would get away from the fraternities and sororities as the basis for student representation. And that's why they talked about my year was the constitution revision year. And we got it through but then it, it failed in a vote to the, in the general vote, so we did not achieve the reorganization, but some of the people who were with us in that campaign at UCLA then went to Berkeley [University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, California] and they became part of the later Free Speech Movement. And at Berkeley there was also the second instance of running as a party, I'll call slate, at Berkeley and they won, and Free Speech Movement came out of that at Berkeley.$$Where did you end up living when you went to UCLA?$$At this cooperative housing, at Landfair House [Los Angeles, California], which was great actually, when I look back on it, because all of the students of color, that's where they had to live. Wherever they came from so you had a lot of international students, so, Hassan Nasir who later became secretary general for OPEC [Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries] was one of our roommates, Achmen Bedry [ph.] who became one of the ministers of agriculture in the Sudan, was one of our housemates, and then, you know, there were others also. Ed Thorp [Edward Thorp] who wrote the book 'Beating,' you know, 'Beating the Table' [sic. 'Beat the Dealer: A Winning Strategy for the Game of Twenty-One,' Edward O. Thorp] or something, in Las Vegas [Nevada], was one of our house mates. Yeah, we had a good time.$Just at that point Randall Robinson and Chris Enteda [ph.], at Harvard [Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts], Randall is in law school [Harvard Law School, Cambridge, Massachusetts], Chris is in the divinity school [Harvard Divinity School, Cambridge, Massachusetts], were engaging the Portuguese territories by asking Harvard to divest itself from its holdings in the Gulf Oil Corporation and others doing business in, in Angola. And, of course, they refused to do it, et cetera. So that's when I first met Randall, was in the context of our looking for some framework that make our organization bigger, or I guess, get a leader beyond ourselves for it, and we, you know, were disappointed with Owusu [Howard Fuller; Owusu Sadaukai] so then I meet Randall, I said, well, you know, let's, let's collaborate and throw our, our weight behind Randall. Randall at that point has organized the Gulf boycott, so that became our first project. In the course of doing that project we then talk about these larger visions of having a lobby, and let's move on in that direction, and so that's the group. It's the Committee of Positive Action out of the African Heritage Studies Association coming out of that Puerto Rico meeting. Now Randall was not at the Puerto Rico meeting, but we have the entourage then to put with him and so he moves to Washington [D.C.], takes a job with one of the congressmen, black congressman from St. Louis, East St. Louis [Illinois]. And actually he also works with the person I'm trying to think of, and, and then we plan for launching TransAfrica [TransAfrica Forum; TransAfrica] as a lobby, and it's formally a lobby. We create a second institution as TransAfrica formed, as a 501(c)(3) to do the public education. We were, it was hard money, you know, we were going to be able to walk the halls and try to influence legislation and influence elections. And it took some years to put that together, but in 1977 it was, it was together, and we all went on the board, all of them from the Committee on Positive Action became the core, essentially the first board, and then I think Ron Walters [HistoryMaker Ronald Walters] recruited the Dick Hatcher [HistoryMaker Richard Hatcher] from Gary [Indiana] and Dick Hatcher may have been the one to recruit [HistoryMaker] Harry Belafonte or Randall may have done that. I'd already known Harry from an earlier episode and, you know, we launched TransAfrica as a general lobby for the African liberation struggle, not just for South Africa. Subsequently, of course, things came to focus on South Africa after the Portuguese, the success of the Portuguese Revolution of 1974 [Carnation Revolution] and the freedom of Angola and Mozambique and so forth. Then you had a staging area so to speak of liberated territory around the (unclear), and you could focus in, and so that's what we did, and then, you know, we come to really hone in on apartheid, on into the Free South Africa Movement in the '80s [1980s]. I, you know, got a call today that while they were in the embassy from the office saying, you know, Randall and [HistoryMaker] Marion Barry and Fauntroy [HistoryMaker Reverend Walter Fauntroy] are in the embassy, you know, it went as we thought and this man was not going to sort of repudiate, you know, apartheid, and so forth. So they're gonna stay and now is the time for the secondary stuff. So what we decided to do here was to go after the consul. We knew it was an honorary consulate and so therefore we had a chance to actually get that person to resign because he's got more, you know, he's an American law firm with a contract with South Africa to serve as their counsel and now, you know, it's a long story, but, but that tactic worked and we were able to then stage a success within a couple of days of getting the consul to resign and became a public event. But knowing that that might happen, we then looked beyond that success to say how do we sustain an effort here?

Lorenzo Morris

Political science professor Lorenzo Morris, chair of the Political Science Department at Howard University, and author and consultant on international and American public policy and electoral behavior, was born in Poughkeepsie, New York, on October 27, 1946. Morris’s parents, Annie Leola Crouch Morris and Henry Grady Morris, Jr. moved to Poughkeepsie from Columbus, Georgia, before Morris was born. Morris received his early education in Poughkeepsie public schools before continuing his studies at Fisk University, Oberlin College, and Yale University; he received his Ph.D. and M.A. degrees in political science from the University of Chicago.

In addition to his position at Howard University, Morris’s academic career included teaching at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a research fellowship at the Brookings Institution, and an appointment as a Senior Fellow in the Institute for the Study of Educational Policy. Outside of academia, Morris often provided commentary on public affairs for television and radio; he was the author of five scholarly books on race and presidential politics, higher education policy, and party politics as well as numerous articles on political matters including African American politics, and questions of race in American public policy. Internationally, Morris consulted on educational projects in Haiti, Botswana and Indonesia and on matters of electoral participation in Benin and Senegal. As part of the U.S. delegation to Haiti in 1990, Morris advised and observed during the election.

Morris’s additional leadership roles included acting as co-director of the Census Information Center at Howard University, president of the National Conference of Black Political Scientists, vice-chair of the University Senate, and president of Phi Beta Kappa at Howard University.

Accession Number

A2005.153

Sex

Male

Interview Date

6/28/2005

Last Name

Morris

Maker Category
Schools

Morse Young Child Magnet School

Poughkeepsi High School

Fisk University

University of Chicago

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

First Name

Lorenzo

Birth City, State, Country

Poughkeepsie

HM ID

MOR08

Favorite Season

Spring, Summer

State

New York

Favorite Vacation Destination

France

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

10/27/1946

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Turkey

Short Description

Political science professor Lorenzo Morris (1946 - ) is chair of the political science department at Howard University.

Employment

Bookings Institution

Howard University

U.S. Department of State

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:1587,34:2553,56:9729,332:10833,367:12006,390:12351,396:18423,536:20424,617:22287,653:28922,683:29330,690:38510,981:45582,1119:50580,1126:51140,1136:52890,1171:56810,1271:58910,1309:64111,1372:64446,1378:64714,1383:65049,1389:65719,1413:69136,1514:69672,1524:70543,1540:71012,1549:71481,1560:72017,1570:74094,1631:77042,1707:78918,1768:80995,1816:81263,1821:88160,1916:89029,1921:90767,1958:91557,1969:94796,2019:96060,2035:96534,2042:108320,2300:108735,2306:112885,2410:114213,2433:129430,2628:130830,2672:136426,2748:136852,2755:137491,2766:139692,2817:144116,2859:144451,2865:144920,2874:145523,2885:145925,2892:146528,2912:146796,2917:147399,2927:147868,2957:152290,3058:154635,3130:165884,3290:166924,3320:174862,3407:176662,3460:177238,3469:180334,3542:185014,3655:188974,3715:196050,3760$0,0:476,14:1428,40:1768,46:6052,135:8296,250:10608,409:10880,414:13668,471:14212,481:15368,512:17340,556:24950,655:25977,670:30401,748:37748,910:43641,939:43949,946:47800,995:48710,1016:50400,1056:51895,1090:53585,1127:55535,1172:55795,1177:56575,1199:59825,1283:80048,1631:80622,1639:80950,1644:88310,1729:88859,1740:89225,1747:90323,1773:91055,1787:91665,1799:94776,1876:95142,1883:95630,1896:96179,1910:96484,1916:98314,1962:98680,1969:99534,1987:100083,2000:101852,2046:102157,2052:102401,2057:103133,2078:103438,2084:104170,2099:104414,2104:104658,2109:104902,2114:112773,2189:113058,2195:114255,2240:114882,2254:115224,2262:115737,2272:115965,2277:116421,2286:117219,2303:118245,2324:120012,2378:121608,2422:121950,2429:122235,2435:123204,2460:123546,2467:123888,2474:127730,2483:130214,2528:135251,2622:136355,2655:136976,2666:138770,2716:142496,2846:142979,2854:150260,2904:150772,2914:151476,2927:152436,2944:153140,2956:153460,2962:155210,2967:156050,2980:157940,3015:159270,3037:161447,3048:161702,3054:162263,3066:162620,3074:162926,3081:164405,3134:167780,3179:178960,3352
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Lorenzo Morris' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Lorenzo Morris lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Lorenzo Morris describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Lorenzo Morris describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Lorenzo Morris describes how his parents met and moved to Poughkeepsie, New York

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Lorenzo Morris describes his parents' personalities and lists his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Lorenzo Morris describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Lorenzo Morris describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Lorenzo Morris describes his childhood personality

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Lorenzo Morris describes his early interest in political science

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Lorenzo Morris describes his education in Poughkeepsie, New York

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Lorenzo Morris recalls racial discrimination at Poughkeepsie High School

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Lorenzo Morris shares experiences with racial discrimination in debate clubs

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Lorenzo Morris describes attending Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Lorenzo Morris recalls the March on Washington

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Lorenzo Morris describes the Civil Rights Movement in Nashville, Tennessee

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Lorenzo Morris describes civil rights activities at Fisk University

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Lorenzo Morris remembers Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King's death

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Lorenzo Morris describes his studies and activities at Fisk University

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Lorenzo Morris recalls his decision to attend the University of Chicago

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Lorenzo Morris remembers influential people at the University of Chicago

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Lorenzo Morris talks about the Watergate Scandal

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Lorenzo Morris describes his political ideology

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Lorenzo Morris talks about travelling to England, France and Quebec, Canada

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Lorenzo Morris recalls his political work in Haiti

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Lorenzo Morris recalls his experience in Sierra Leone

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Lorenzo Morris describes his work at Howard University

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Lorenzo Morris describes his first book, 'The Chit'lin Controversy'

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Lorenzo Morris talks about his publications

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Lorenzo Morris reflects upon the National Black Political Convention and the Bakke Case

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Lorenzo Morris reflects on the tenth anniversary of the Million Man March

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Lorenzo Morris describes the National Conference of Black Political Scientists

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Lorenzo Morris describes the political scientists he admires

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Lorenzo Morris describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Lorenzo Morris reflects upon his life

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Lorenzo Morris reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Lorenzo Morris talks about his wife, Marsha Morris

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Lorenzo Morris describes his family and in-laws

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Lorenzo Morris describes his volunteer work as a political analyst and advisor

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Lorenzo Morris describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Lorenzo Morris narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$4

DAStory

4$1

DATitle
Lorenzo Morris recalls the March on Washington
Lorenzo Morris describes his first book, 'The Chit'lin Controversy'
Transcript
My only southern encounter before that was the March on Washington, '63 [1963].$$Okay so you went to the march?$$Um-hm.$$Well that's a big deal.$$Oh, it's a big deal for me (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) I think, that's an exciting story--$$Oh yeah it was an escape, my parents [Henry Morris, Jr. and Annie Crouch Morris] did one thing they encouraged us to travel whenever we could, but never without them so it was a big deal for me to go. But fortunately the young single minister was trying to date my aunt, who was a student at Howard [University, Washington, D.C.], and was visiting us during the summer and babysitting us during the summer so that in order to increase his social relations he promised to make sure that I was well supervised. And I can remember there was no seat left on the bus and you know those busses went (gestures), and so they put a stool on so I sat on the stool (laughter) from Poughkeepsie [New York] to Washington [D.C.] but my aunt lived in Washington so I'd been here many times before and I was struck by one thing I always tell my students because it's sort of like a kind of social moment of political significance not for the world but as a symbol is that when you got to Baltimore [Maryland] and I knew how far Baltimore was from D.C. the busses almost came to a stop. And as far as the eye could see, you could see them and there were these people singing, out and blacks off on the side of the road and I can remember them singing my grandmother's songs, 'Will the Circle Be Unbroken' and I thought, this was a whole new world. All my life they told me there were only a few of us blacks 'cause I hadn't seen that many and all of a sudden there were all of these people. All who thought the same thing, even knew the songs and it was the most moving moment for me, more than the--Mart- King's [Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.] speech which I liked, but it was that long slow movement from Baltimore to Washington where every fa- black people waved and symbolized experiences and things that I thought I knew. And so you know it was an indelible point in my mind.$$Yeah, I can see that, yeah, so were you very--when you were at the march were you very, were you close or were you far back in the crowd or (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) I was close enough; I always look for old pictures to see if you can see this kid, believe it or not I wasn't tall, swinging feet over the reservoir near the front. And you know, I got to see King as he came by and I remember [HistoryMaker] Andrew Young 'cause I thought he was young and he looked young. I remember Mahalia Jackson song ['How I Got Over'] which I thought was wonderful. As a snotty little debate student I analyzed King's speech so I really didn't pay attention to it as a moving--it just looked at the structure (laughter).$$What was the most, other than the numbers of people there, what was the most important thing about that day that you remember?$$I think it was the nervousness, not by me, everybody thinking--it's hard for--to remember that at the time people thought there would be violence. And I had all these little umble [ph.] notes, numbers to call and places to go if anything happened and of course nothing happened. But I can remember this sense of sort of success that it went off well that people came, that--oh and when I got back, my brothers and sisters--I had gone to something important. Now in Poughkeepsie [New York] anything outside of three blocks was already a big deal. I had gone to something important and come back. It was a, I mean, I've been to Madagascar, and I've been to--but never nothing equaled that trip to Washington and will ever in terms of distance, distance from an enclosed little environment.$Well, tell us about what, what was your first book and--?$$First book was done largely as a collection of work--research from graduate school [University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois] with a friend of mine [HistoryMaker] Charles Henry who's down at Berkeley [University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, California]. And it's called, 'The Chit'lin Controversy[: Race and Public Policy in America]', and as I've often noted to those who laugh about the title, it's the only book that I've had that's gone into several reprints. It was cert- I certainly would not have picked the title now, but I picked it then because it was a little bit shocking and disturbing and because I thought it reflected the shockingness, shocking character reflected part of the issue. It relates to a story by Bontemps--Arna Bontemps and Langston Hughes in a book called, 'Negro Folklore' ['The Book of Negro Folklore'] and in this book the black guy goes into a Washington, D.C. restaurant and I guess it's the late '50s [1950s] or early '60s [1960s] and he asked--it had just been desegregated, something people don't oft- often forget, that Washington was segregated. And, and they're very nice, it's an elegant restaurant and they show them to a table and they--and so he get--they give him the menu and he asks, "Do you have any collard greens?" And they say, "No." Then he said, "Do you have any black-eyed-peas?" And you know how the story goes, then finally he says, "Do you have any chit'lins?" and they say, "No." And he gets up, folds the menu, gets up and says, "You folks just aren't ready for desegregation." And why the story, because it's about the insignificance of what we've called physiological desegregation, of moving people and places that ignores the cultural components of choices and values. And so it focuses heavily, though not exclusively, on education and argues that letting blacks in the white schools if it doesn't change the structure of school administration or selection in choices is insignificant. And so we use this story like that, but we use the story because at the same time it's embarrassing quality, to some extent, 'The Chit'lin Controversy,' helps to bring attention to the fact that African Americans often did not want to recognize that cultural differences were significant, that if everybody had an equal chance of going to schools the testing issues would resolve themselves and people would come out on top which of course hasn't happened because there are cultural sig- significance factors in, in, in evaluation in system and merit. Which we need, I think, to recognize, but also largely we picked the title because we just referred to it, the chit'lin book and by the time it had gotten to the publisher we had no name for it (laughter)--$$(Laughter).$$--was what we called it because that was the opening story and so we left it.$$Okay, all right.$$But I think the value of the observations are significant today that differential systems of merit and reward and of judgment are, are not just equal among individuals because groups have effects on those things and those are things we call cultural.$$Okay, now that, that one was published in--$$Si- almost when I was still a student, it was '76 [1976].$$Okay.$$I wasn't still a student but it had been written when--it was written when I was a student.

Samuel DuBois Cook

Retired Dillard University president and the first African American professor at Duke University, Samuel DuBois Cook, was born on November 21, 1928, in Griffin, Georgia. Cook’s parents were Mary Beatrice Daniel Cook and the Reverend M.E. Cook, a Baptist minister who instilled a passion for education in all of his children; this upbringing had a deep impact on Cook. Cook was given his middle name in honor of former Morehouse College president Dr. Charles DuBois Hubert. Cook attended Griffin Vocational High School and graduated from there in 1944; he went on to earn an A.B. degree in history from Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia, where he met and was mentored by Dr. Benjamin Mays. Cook then attended Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, where he earned his M.A. degree in political science and his Ph.D. in 1954.

Cook started his professional career as a teacher after a short stint in the U.S. Army; he taught political science at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in 1955. Cook then moved to Atlanta University where he began teaching in 1956, and became politically active. Cook worked on black voter registration and served as youth director of the NAACP of Georgia. During his career, Cook taught at other colleges and universities including the University of Illinois, University of California – Los Angeles, and Duke University, where he became the University’s first African American professor. Cook was also the first African American to hold a regular faculty appointment at a predominantly white university in the South. In 1974, Cook was chosen as president of Dillard University; he filled this role for twenty-two years, retiring in 1997. Cook was credited with beginning the modernization of Dillard University’s infrastructure.

In 1993, Dillard University honored Cook by naming the school’s new fine arts and communication center after him. That same year, Cook was elected by Duke University’s Board of Trustee as a Trustee Emeritus. Duke University again honored Cook with the establishment of the Samuel DuBois Cook Society 1997; the society aims to celebrate and support African American students at the university through programming and scholarships. In 2006, Duke University established a postdoctoral fellowship in Cook’s name to support social scientists that study issues related to race, ethnicity, and gender. In 2015, Duke dedicated the Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity in his honor. Though retired, Cook remained a visiting scholar and lecturer at universities around the United States.

Cook passed away on May 30, 2017 at the age of 88.

Accession Number

A2005.139

Sex

Male

Interview Date

6/20/2005 |and| 12/8/2005

Last Name

Cook

Maker Category
Middle Name

DuBois

Schools

Griffin Vocational High School

The Ohio State University

Cabin Creek School

Spring Hill School

Morehouse College

First Name

Samuel

Birth City, State, Country

Griffin

HM ID

COO08

Favorite Season

Fall, Spring

State

Georgia

Favorite Vacation Destination

Cruises

Favorite Quote

Aim High, Reach For The Stars, Burn The Midnight Oil, And Give Life Your Best Shot.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Birth Date

11/21/1928

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

United States

Favorite Food

None

Death Date

5/30/2017

Short Description

Political science professor and university president Samuel DuBois Cook (1928 - 2017 ) was the president of Dillard University, and the first African American professor at Duke University.

Employment

Southern University

Atlanta University

Dillard University

Duke University

Favorite Color

Black, Brown, White

Timing Pairs
0,0:5240,227:8096,281:17767,344:18195,349:23545,405:29432,425:53912,726:73726,883:102219,1293:115335,1478:122928,1554:146146,1909:150472,1959:181980,2319:187200,2419:211000,2757:229630,2963$0,0:3108,39:3922,140:18428,327:33784,485:43260,634:43508,639:54080,798:57762,834:62092,873:68890,971:75430,1038:92684,1228:125944,1624:130506,1670:153968,2068:174920,2311
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Samuel DuBois Cook's interview, session 1

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his father's commitment to education

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers the strict Baptist ban on dancing

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers the strict Christianity of Griffin, Georgia

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his immediate family

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls an early experience with racism, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls an early experience with racism, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls his father's warning not to work for whites

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers his education as a child

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers the notable figures of Cabin Creek School in Griffin, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers the closure of Cabin Creek School

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls a financial barrier at Spring Hill School in Griffin, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers his influential teacher, George Mosby [ph.]

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers attending Griffin Vocational High School

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls the students at his high school who attended college

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers deciding to attend Morehouse College

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls meeting Dr. Benjamin E. Mays

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Samuel DuBois Cook recounts memories of Dr. Benjamin E. Mays

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls seeing Dr. Benjamin E. Mays at The Ohio State University

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls being elected student body president of Atlanta's Morehouse College

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his classmates Bob Johnson and HistoryMaker Lerone Bennett

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls his classmate Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his academics at Atlanta's Morehouse College

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls his time at Columbus' The Ohio State University

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers the Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka decision

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his political science dissertation

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes black academics' experience of racial discrimination in the 1950s

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls great thinkers at Baton Rouge's Southern University, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls great thinkers at Baton Rouge's Southern University, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls his political involvement in Atlanta, Georgia in the 1950s

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls Atlanta's civil rights activists

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls his relationship with Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes the spontaneity of the Civil Rights Movement, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers the spontaneity of the Civil Rights Movement, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls teaching American government when the Civil Rights Act of 1964 passed

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Samuel DuBois Cook explains the necessity of legal action in the fight for civil rights

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Samuel DuBois Cook talks about Dixiecrats in the Democratic Party

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Slating of Samuel DuBois Cook's interview, session 2

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes civil rights activism on Atlanta's college campuses

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers notable figures of the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Samuel DuBois Cook explains racism's relationship to religion

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes W.E.B. Dubois' legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his academic focus

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers becoming a professor at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls being welcomed at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Samuel DuBois Cook reflects upon his stance on the Vietnam War

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes the classes he taught at Duke University

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Samuel DuBois Cook reflects on Lyndon Baines Johnson's presidency

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination, pt. 1

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination, pt. 2

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Samuel DuBois Cook recalls being honored by Duke University

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers becoming president of New Orleans' Dillard University

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers emulating Dr. Benjamin E. Mays as Dillard University president, pt. 1

Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers emulating Dr. Benjamin E. Mays as Dillard University president, pt. 2

Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes aspects of his Dillard University presidency

Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes the highlights of his Dillard University presidency

Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Samuel DuBois Cook remembers his most outstanding students

Tape: 8 Story: 5 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his activities after retirement

Tape: 8 Story: 6 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community today

Tape: 8 Story: 7 - Samuel DuBois Cook reflects on his life

Tape: 8 Story: 8 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his legacy

Tape: 8 Story: 9 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes his wife and children

Tape: 9 Story: 1 - Samuel DuBois Cook describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 9 Story: 2 - Samuel DuBois Cook reflects on his successes and perseverance

DASession

1$2

DATape

3$7

DAStory

7$7

DATitle
Samuel DuBois Cook recalls meeting Dr. Benjamin E. Mays
Samuel DuBois Cook remembers becoming president of New Orleans' Dillard University
Transcript
So (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) And after having Dr. [Benjamin] Mays, you know, I was going to Morehouse [College, Atlanta, Georgia].$$Describe meeting Dr. Mays. How did you meet him and what were the circumstances?$$Now, that I can answer. On the tobacco farm. And it would have a Morehouse faculty and so forth there as supervisors and they would come up. Every summer, Dr. [B.R.] Brazeal who at that time was dean, whose daughter [Aurelia E. Brazeal] is now an ambassador to Ethiopia and so forth. (Unclear) B.R. Brazeal, distinguished economist who got a Ph.D. from Columbia University [New York, New York]. He would always come up in the summer and make a tour of all the tobacco farms that I mentioned and some that I didn't mention to see if everything was all right, and you know he was the kind of diplomat in residence temporarily. Dr. Mays would also come up to visit, so he came up to--I was at Hartman Brothers [sic. Hartman Tobacco Company] in Hazardville, Connecticut and Dr. Mays came up to visit the--his students and so forth and watch, and Dr. Mays was a great competitor, he jumped out there and was picking tobacco and so forth, but to Dr. Mays--I said and he spoke to us and I remember to this day the kind of suit and he became, not only my mentor, and when I came back to Atlanta University [Clark Atlanta University, Atlanta, Georgia] to teach, but a good friend. I, I came, I was very close to him. In fact, I guess the biggest honor in my life and the most difficult task I've ever been assigned was he asked me to deliver the eulogy when he died and so forth. And when he wrote his book, 'Born to Rebel: [An Autobiography,' Benjamin E. Mays] he asked me to write the introduction and so forth. So he became just my idol, and that's why I said I think about him you know quite often. And, but I remember the suit Dr. Mays had on when, when I met him and he was going down into tobacco farm with that fine suit and so forth. But that's how I met Dr. Mays on the tobacco farm, and there's a famous pediatrician here, a Morehouse grad, Dr. Otis W. Smith. You might have interviewed him along with Dr. Clinton W. Warner [sic. HistoryMaker Clinton Warner]. And one summer, Dr. Smith and I were asked to stay on the tobacco farm two extra weeks--after all the other guys had gone, some two hundred or more had left, and we stayed there and took care of the farm, closed everything down. We were just glad for the opportunity, stay there and made some extra money and so forth. Now, he's a wealthy physician, millionaire, and he retired and, and so forth. But that's story amazing and about how I met Dr. Mays (unclear).$$Okay.$$And we became very (unclear) very good friends and when I came to Atlanta University to teach in 1956, he was in Hughes Hall, his office was down that way, mine was over here and Dr. Clements [Dr. Rufus E. Clement] was over there so, and we developed this, you know, and I saw him all the time.$Well, getting back to--now in 1974 now what happened, is this when you went to Dillard [University, New Orleans, Louisiana]?$$Yeah, 1974 is when I made the most difficult decision in my life to leave Duke [University, Durham, North Carolina] because I had planned to retire there. We had a wonderful home and we had wonderful friends and all of that, but I had to--and when Duke, not Duke, when Dillard inquired about my interests, I said, "No." I wasn't interested. They called me back in two or three months and I said, "I'm not interested. I'm committed to teaching," which is true. You know I always felt that teaching is so much more divine, and Morris R. Cohen said, than administration. I wasn't interested in being anyone's administrator (unclear). So what I didn't know was that my saying no to them accentuated their interest in, in me. They said we want someone who is not seeking the position and doesn't want it and so forth. So that is when on for some eight months and so forth before I considered even talking to them about it, and then seeing the thing and all that. Then finally talked to me about it at Duke and I was impressed, but then I went on that campus, beautiful campus and the you know the sadness now of [Hurricane] Katrina and how it destroyed, devastated the campus and I'm told, I haven't seen it. But one morning, you know they had a great architecture and beautiful greening campus. I went on that campus--and a beautiful day really--and I got a flashback of Dr. [Benjamin] Mays, Benjamin Elijah Mays, my great mentor at Morehouse [College, Atlanta, Georgia], I saw him on that campus at Morehouse, dashing from his office, from his home to his office it hurt, and I said to me, "You know, I said if I can do one-tenth for the students at Dillard that Dr. Mays did for us at Morehouse then I know that my living will not be in vain," and that changed my mind on it. When I got back to Atlanta [Georgia], I told Dr. Mays, I said, "Dr. Mays, you tricked me." He said, "What happened? You talking differently now than you talked back then." I said, "You tricked me," I said, "That flashback." And it's true. When I saw that flashback of Dr. Mays walking on the Morehouse campus, that's when I said, "Yes, sir," you know, "if you elect me president, I'll accept."

Frank Morris

Educator Frank Morris, Sr., was born in Cairo, Illinois on July 21, 1931. At age six, he moved to Boston, where his grandparents and his aunt and uncle raised him. An honor student in high school, Morris was awarded a scholarship to attend Colgate University. From there, he attended Syracuse University, earning his M.P.A. degree. Morris later went on to earn a Ph.D. in political science from MIT and he later completed the requirements for his master’s in international affairs from Georgetown University.

After graduating from Syracuse University in 1962, Morris joined the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, working out of the Seattle office. He joined the U.S. State Department in 1966, and by 1969, he was the deputy regional coordinator for the Latin America Office of Program and Policy Coordination. In 1972, Morris moved to Chicago, where he became an associate professor of political science at Northwestern University. After working with the National Education Institute and the Community Services Administration, Morris joined the U.S. Foreign Aid Program to Jamaica, where he retired as deputy director in 1983. Returning from Jamaica, Morris became the executive director of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation. In 1986, Morris was named the associate dean of the Graduate School of Public Affairs at the University of Maryland, College Park. In 1988, he left for Morgan State University, where he retired as the dean of graduate studies and research in 1996. After moving to Texas in 1997 to be closer to his grandchildren, Morris became a visiting professor in government and politics at the University of Texas, where he remained until he retired in 1999.

Throughout his distinguished career, Morris was highly influential in all the positions he held. While working with the State Department in Jamaica, he oversaw the growth of U.S. federal aid to the country to become one of the three highest per capita U.S. AID programs in the world. While serving as dean at Morgan State, he formed a partnership with the Hokkaido Foundation of Japan and instituted a program to teach Japanese. He has also served as a consultant to organizations in the U.S. on issues relating to Africa and Europe.

Morris has received numerous awards over the years, including having been named “Father of the Year,” by the Chicago Defender and recipient of the Superior Honor Award by the Department of State. He and his wife have four children.

Accession Number

A2004.217

Sex

Male

Interview Date

10/27/2004

Last Name

Morris

Maker Category
Schools

George A. Lewis Middle School

Roxbury Memorial High School

John B. Drake Elementary School

Williams Elementary School

William Lloyd Garrison Elementary School

Boston Latin School

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Colgate University

Syracuse University

Georgetown University

First Name

Frank

Birth City, State, Country

Cairo

HM ID

MOR07

Favorite Season

Summer

State

Illinois

Favorite Vacation Destination

Cruises

Favorite Quote

The Trouble With Common Sense Is That It's Not So Common.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

7/21/1931

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Broiled Lobster

Short Description

Academic administrator and political science professor Frank Morris (1931 - ) served as the executive director of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, and became the associate dean of the Graduate School of Public Affairs at the University of Maryland. In 1988, he was hired by Morgan State University, where he retired as the dean of graduate studies in 1996.

Employment

United States Department of Housing and Urban Development

United States State Department

Latin America Office of Program and Policy Coordination

Northwestern University

National Education Institute

Community Services Administration

United States Foreign Aid Program to Jamaica

University of Maryland, College Park

Morgan State University

University of Texas

Favorite Color

Earth Tones

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Frank Morris's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Frank Morris lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Frank Morris describes his mother's family background and how his parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Frank Morris describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Frank Morris describes his paternal aunts and uncles

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Frank Morris describes his father and paternal aunts

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Frank Morris describes his paternal uncles and their professions

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Frank Morris recalls his grandparents' hosting extended family at their home

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Frank Morris describes living in Cairo, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Frank Morris describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Frank Morris describes his father's family

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Frank Morris recalls his early childhood in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Frank Morris recalls his experience in Boston Public Schools

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Frank Morris describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Frank Morris recalls a field trip to Boston's Museum of Science

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Frank Morris remembers leaving Boston Latin School

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Frank Morris describes Roxbury Memorial High School in Boston, Massachusetts

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Frank Morris describes his paternal grandfather

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Frank Morris talks about playing basketball in high school

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Frank Morris describes his classmates at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Frank Morris recalls his internship at Senator Leverett Saltonstall's office

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Frank Morris explains why he chose Syracuse University for graduate school

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Frank Morris remembers playing football at Colgate University

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Frank Morris describes his experiences at Syracuse University in New York

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Frank Morris recalls meeting his wife

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Frank Morris recalls his time in Seattle, Washington

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Frank Morris recalls working for the U.S. Department of State

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Frank Morris talks about the importance of understanding history

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Frank Morris describes the value of critical thinking and his doctoral program at MIT

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Frank Morris remembers his trip to Ghana in 1970

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Frank Morris describes his time at Northwestern University and writing for the Evanston Review

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Frank Morris describes his civil rights work and NAACP involvement in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Frank Morris describes his government research positions in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Frank Morris critiques the Jensen Study and IQ tests

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Frank Morris describes problems with standardized testing

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Frank Morris recalls his work as education chairman of the Montgomery County, Maryland NAACP

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Frank Morris recalls serving as USAID's deputy director and chief of operations in Jamaica

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Frank Morris talks about his work with USAID in Jamaica

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Frank Morris describes changing racist hiring practices in Jamaica

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Frank Morris recalls how he handled unfair work practices in Jamaica, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Frank Morris recalls how he handled unfair work practices in Jamaica, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Frank Morris recalls nominating his secretary for an award and seeing Bob Marley in concert

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Frank Morris recalls joining the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Frank Morris describes his achievements with the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Frank Morris recalls his disappointments at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Frank Morris recalls his disappointments at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Frank Morris recalls being fired from the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Frank Morris recalls becoming a professor and attending FESTAC '87

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Frank Morris recalls becoming dean of graduate studies and research at Morgan State University

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Frank Morris reflects upon American graduate schools' lack of recruitment for minority students

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Frank Morris talks about his friendship with HistoryMaker Edward "Buzz" Palmer

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Frank Morris describes his work with the Center for Immigration Studies

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Frank Morris explains the impact of immigration on the American economy

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Frank Morris describes his trip to Europe with HistoryMaker Edward "Buzz" Palmer

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Frank Morris recalls uncovering misallocation of funds at the Daniel Hand Fund, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Frank Morris recalls uncovering misallocation of funds at the Daniel Hand Fund, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Frank Morris describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 11 - Frank Morris reflects upon his career

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Frank Morris talks about affirmative action and his principles

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Frank Morris reflects upon his legacy, pt. 1

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Frank Morris reflects upon his legacy, pt. 2

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Frank Morris shares his thoughts on reparations for African Americans

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Frank Morris describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Frank Morris narrates his photographs.

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$5

DAStory

8$1

DATitle
Frank Morris recalls working for the U.S. Department of State
Frank Morris talks about his work with USAID in Jamaica
Transcript
Okay so now you were in Seattle [Washington] through (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Seattle, Tacoma [Washington] from '62 [1962] through '66 [1966], yes.$$Okay and '66 [1966] you took a job with [U.S.] Foreign Service with the state department [U.S. Department of State].$$That's exactly right a lateral into the Foreign Service into the Latin American bureau. When I was at Syracuse [University, Syracuse, New York] I had a tremendous interest in management information systems and so AID [United States Agency for International Development (USAID)] sort of recruited me along that line. Then I went into the Latin American bureau in development policy and moved right on up the ladder there.$$Now you went to Uruguay right?$$Oh that was in '67 [1967] when they had the presidents summary of the presidents of [Latin] American meeting with LBJ [President Lyndon Baines Johnson] and he was meeting with the different American presidents. That was a wonderful experience. That was a wonderful experience for me in a number of ways because as a relatively junior Foreign Service officer for the first time in my career ever I was working twelve hours on/twelve hours off in the office of the exec staff which was secretary of state staff with Dean Rusk. I was one of his staff down there. One of three people that was his staff that prepared documents for him and what I saw it's really not an overwhelming job, you can have a junior office do this if they've got the intelligence, was to see all the intelligence that was coming in to the secretary of state from all over the world including super-secret stuff from the military intelligence, CIA [Central Intelligence Agency] and all of that and prepare a briefing statement--document for the secretary of state. So when he gets up in the morning, he sees the things that he must know in case he has to talk to the president. So we saw embassy stuff from the state department, we'd see the CIA stuff; we'd see the military stuff. I found out some things then that will always be with me. One of the things was that how much of what goes for secret--top secret stuff in the U.S. government is over classified. I would see the same material classified as secret and top secret from military intelligence, state department intelligence and other intelligence, CIA intelligence and it's going to the secretary of state and then I would have because we also had the newspaper clippings from the papers around the world, I would find articles The Baltimore Sun, The Washington Post, The New York Times and gave greater in depth coverage than what our fantastically super-secret things were doing. I'm saying who are they keeping it a secret from? What really hit home and this is a true story Dean Rusk every morning when he got down the one thing he wanted to see before our briefing that we'd worked twelve hours to prepare of all the stuff around the world was a copy of The New York Times. This is the honest to goodness truth folks that showed me something. I hope that our press and especially the great papers and their foreign correspondents haven't cut down to the extent that I hope this is still the case as it was then for informing the American people. I still believe that it is that the great papers have people from the inside that would give them really good information and so there is tremendous over classification going. They want to classify things to the American people. The enemy knows it but the American people folks want to keep things classified for them. So that was a wonderful experience.$$Do you think that maybe it's because since people don't really read the paper like they ought to so a lot of people are going to know anyway if it's in The New York Times?$$That's sad, that's really sad and what's going to count as an educated person and an empowered person is the ability to differentiate for knowledge. I used to tell my students that the powerful in the United States don't try to exercise control by limiting media but it's by finding people with information and figuring out that our people are not going to be educated enough to be able to find the wheat from the chaff or know how to do it or want to take the effort to do it. So this is the essence or one of the essences of being empowered, to be able to filter through-being able to handle large volumes of information whether that's reading quickly, whether it's being able to absorb, being able to record things or take notes so that you will know and to recognize what's important. This is the essence I think of empowerment in education and also understand how and when bureaucracies are vulnerable.$Well you were asking about my time in the [U.S.] Foreign Service in Jamaica and I'm really proud of that. I made some major improvements down there. When we went down there Jamaica was not really very much on the radar list of American countries of interest because it had just come out of the [Michael] Manley regime and he is not very friendly with the United States.$$A friend of [Fidel] Castro (unclear) (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) Well it wasn't that he was a Jamaican--an independent Jamaican and I think that we once again the early version was either you're with us or against us. To stay an independent country you can't be a friend of Castro and be a friend of ours it's an arrogance that is not worthy and so when we went down there that's the way it was in '79 [1979]. Then in '80 [1980] they had an election of where Seaga--Edward Seaga who is the other competitor to Manley won in an election that it was full of violence and so forth and Seaga (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Just to be, for point of clarification, Seaga is white, right?$$Yes Lebanese and so Seaga really convinced Reagan [President Ronald Wilson Reagan] that he was big private enterprise fellow brilliant. Seaga [sic. Michael Manley] London School of Economics [London School of Economics and Political Science, London, England] all very, very socialist (unclear), he convinced Reagan he was going to be the private enterprise man and we went from almost being the bottom of the per capita U.S. foreign assistance to almost to the top and Reagan--Jamaica was his first foreign trip and so we were part of a plan and I figured this was coming. So one of the things that helped win my award was that we had been planning early the AID [United States Agency for International Development (USAID)] director and I for just such an event that we would have contingency plans if all of a sudden it could be a big increase in aid to Jamaica. Sure enough there was so we were able to get it almost underway almost overnight. But more than that I'll show you the second highest award--agency award in the state department [U.S. Department of State] superior honor award for my work in Jamaica and going out and talking to Jamaicans and encouraging them to look at things differently. One of the sad things I found in Jamaica was that there wasn't a value of Jamaican products. Some of the things that Jamaican products not just their beer but some of the beautiful wood if you look around in my home I have some of the guango wood and other things and some of their paintings. Jamaicans had for years I guess one of the remnants of colonist, some Jamaicans had always believed that things which were foreign were better and one of the things I pointed out that some of their things are some of the greatest in the world and they need to realize that before they could really affectively market them.

Ronald Walters

Professor Ronald Walters, internationally renowned expert on African American leadership and politics, was born in Wichita, Kansas, on July 20, 1938. After attending Fisk University as an undergraduate, Walters earned his graduate degrees from American University. Walters went on to teach at Georgetown and Syracuse Universities; chair the African and Afro-American Studies Department at Brandeis University and the Political Science Department at Howard University; and work as professor of government and politics at the University of Maryland. Walters served as director of the African American Leadership Institute and Scholar Practitioner Program, and was a distinguished leadership scholar at the James MacGregor Burns Academy of Leadership.

Walters served as a campaign manager and consultant for the Reverend Jesse Jackson during his two presidential bids and was a policy adviser for Congressmen Charles Diggs and William Gray. During the 2000 election season, Walters worked as a senior correspondent for the National Newspaper Publishers Association and as a political analyst for Black Entertainment Television's Lead Story. Walters was also a regular guest and commentator for several political talk shows on radio and television.

As a scholar, Walters penned six books and wrote over one hundred articles; his monographs won several awards for best book. Walters was also honored for his contributions to the study of African American politics and leadership. Walters was noted for his scholarship on African politics, and visited Africa on several occasions.

Walters and his wife, Patricia Ann, were longtime residents of Silver Spring, Maryland. Walters passed away on September 10, 2010.

Accession Number

A2003.121

Sex

Male

Interview Date

6/5/2003 |and| 7/16/2003

Last Name

Walters

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

W.

Organizations
Schools

Wichita East High School

Wichita University

Fisk University

Roosevelt Junior High School

First Name

Ronald

Birth City, State, Country

Wichita

HM ID

WAL04

Favorite Season

Fall

State

Kansas

Favorite Vacation Destination

None

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

7/20/1938

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Soul Food

Death Date

9/10/2010

Short Description

Political science professor Ronald Walters (1938 - 2010 ) is a leading scholar on issues of black leadership and politics, and is a frequent political commentator.

Employment

Department of State

Peace Corps

Georgetown University

Syracuse University

Brandeis University

Howard University

African American Leadership Institute and Scholar Practitioner Program

James MacGregor Burns Academy of Leadership

Favorite Color

Black, Brown

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Ronald Walters interview: Part I

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Ronald Walters's favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Ronald Walters discusses his family history

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Ronald Walters discusses his mother's and father's backgrounds

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Ronald Walters describes the segregated neighborhoods of his youth and the 1958 sit-in movement in Wichita, Kansas

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Ronald Walters describes growing up in a military family

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Ronald Walters describes 'Boys' Nation' and other high school extracurricular activities

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Ronald Walters recalls his time at Wichita University, Wichita, Kansas

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Ronald Walters recalls his experiences at Fisk University, Nashville, Tennessee

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Ronald Walters discusses his early involvement with governmental programs

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Ronald Walters recalls his civil rights involvement in Kansas in the late 1950s

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Ronald Walters discusses the Movement's connection to the Black Church and relates his personal struggle with religion

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Ronald Walters describes his immersion in African American culture and scholarly tradition at Fisk

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Ronald Walters recalls memorable events following college

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Ronald Walters explains why he left the U.S. State Department to pursue a PhD in African Studies

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Ronald Walters recalls African Studies scholars at Howard University in the mid 1960s

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Ronald Walters recalls his employment at Syracuse University and Brandeis University

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Ronald Walters recalls building black institutional political power in the 1970s

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Ronald Walters discusses African Americans' increased interest Africa policy during the 1970s

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Ronald Walters discusses ideological conflicts around the African Liberation Support Committee

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Ronald Walters discusses Congressman Charles Diggs's misconduct

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Ronald Walters discusses meetings of the Pan-African Congress

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Ronald Walters recalls African struggles against American foreign policy

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Ronald Walters discusses Jesse Jackson's 1984 presidential campaign

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Ronald Walters discusses his involvement with the movement for reparations

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Slating of Ronald Walters's interview: Part II

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Ronald Walters recalls the Million Man March

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Ronald Walters discusses the significance of the Million Man March and media coverage of the event

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Ronald Walters discusses the collection of monies at the Million Man March

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Ronald Walters recalls addresses from leaders at the Million Man March

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Ronald Walters considers the Million Woman March and the Million Youth March

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Ronald Walters remembers a network of Afrocentric scholars

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Ronald Walters discusses Black Nationalism's strong emergence in the 1960s and its roots in U.S. history

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Ronald Walters discusses the reparations movement in Africa and the diaspora

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Ronald Walters argues that slavery-like conditions for blacks persisted into the 20th century

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Ronald Walters recalls The World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Ronald Walters evaluates legal cases and proposed legislation for reparations in the United States

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Ronald Walters discusses racial inequality in the United States

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Ronald Walters discusses recent African civil wars and evaluates President George W. Bush's Africa policy

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Ronald Walters discusses the state of Pan Africanism

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Ronald Walters discusses the need for social movements as well as political processes

Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Ronald Walters responds to critics of Pan Africanism

Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Ronald Walters considers his legacy

Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Ronald Walters describes how he'd like to be remembered

Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Photo - Ronald Walters on the cover of 'Black Issues in Higher Education,' 1992

Tape: 8 Story: 5 - Photo - Ronald Walters with Walter Fauntroy and the staff of the African American Leadership Institute. 1998

Tape: 8 Story: 6 - Photo - Ronald Walters greets Chief Moshood Abiola, Abuja, Nigeria, 1993

Tape: 8 Story: 7 - Photo - Ronald Walters with Franklin Jenifer and Jesse Jackson, Washington, D.C., ca. 1988

Tape: 8 Story: 8 - Photo - Ronald Walters promotional poster, February 2003

Tape: 8 Story: 9 - Photo - Ronald Walters with a group of welfare reform researchers

DASession

1$2

DATape

4$6

DAStory

3$2

DATitle
Ronald Walters recalls African struggles against American foreign policy
Ronald Walters discusses the reparations movement in Africa and the diaspora
Transcript
Prior to the new African states emerging, there were very few, you know, they're--prior to the late '50's [1950], early '60's [1960], there were very few African states and so everybody in the Pan African Congress was a, maybe some kind of a troublemaker or somebody trying to put together (unclear) (simultaneous)--you know, the--$$(Laughter) that's right. You're talking in the '50s [1950] and the early 1960s about the fact that a lot of those people were involved in the revolutionary movements. And some of the people who came over here, who we knew in the African Liberation Support Committee, people like Eduardo Mondlane. Now, I knew Eduardo Mondlane because he was very close to the guy who gave me the fellowship to go to American University [Washington, D.C.]. He, Eduardo was involved in the Methodist church. He married a white woman who was in, very close to the Methodist movement in the United States. For all practical purposes, Eduardo Mondlane was an American Methodist, but when [1962] he became head of the movement in Mozambique, I remember him coming to the United States and saying to us one day, "I'm gonna go and talk to the Secretary of State. And I want to see if I can't get some support for our movement." And he, he went. And he talked to the Secretary of State. They turned him down. And he came back to us, he said, "Look," he said, "I struck out." He said, "I'm gonna have to go to the East," he said "because I'm, I've just been elected head of our movement." And he said, "I've got to have some support if I'm going to deal with Portuguese." Well, sure. The same thing with Amilcar Cabral. Amilcar Cabral is fighting a revolution in Guinea-Bissau at Cape Verde [1963-1973]. He comes over here and we meet with him. I mean, I could go on from one leader to the other. These are revolutionaries involved in the struggle which the European countries are involved in, but the United States is a part of the European complex. And so the United States, in effect, takes their side in these situations. So it was, it was a very, it was a very complex, frustrating and in some cases, a dangerous period to be part of these organizations that were in effect fighting against American foreign policy in Africa. And that's one of the reasons why in 1976, we founded TransAfrica. Now, this had been a dream of Charlie Diggs. He was the one who said we need a lobby, an African American lobby on Africa because he understood how politics worked. Randall Robinson was his administrative aide. So when he got in all that trouble, Randy left his office. And he said, okay. Well, what happened was that Charlie [Diggs] called a National Black Leadership Summit in 1976. It was in response to what happened in South Africa when they--remember they had the '76 [1976] struggle and then locked up a good part of the leadership. Well, Charlie Diggs called a National African American Summit and denounced the South African government, demanded that the United States lean on the South Africans to let them out of jail. And, and then again, called for the formation of this, of this lobby. Well, Randy left his office and then went to put it together. So there were, there were four of us who put this lobby together, Randy Robinson, Herschelle [Sullivan] Challenor, who had worked for Diggs, Willard Johnson and myself. And these, these were the people who sort of did the leg--we did the leg work. Randall put it together. Anything that he wanted us to do, you know, we did it. I formed the first Board of Directors of TransAfrica. The person--he asked me who should head it. I told him that I thought that Richard [G.] Hatcher should head it . Richard did play the central role in the 1972 convention, was at that time, one of the key black politicians in the country. The strategy was to move the African agenda to the center of the black community, not to the sides, but to the center. And, and Richard agreed that he would be the, the chairman of the board, and a board was put together. And then we, we put together later on, TransAfrica forum. I wrote the first proposal. With the money coming in, we had Annual Africa Policy Conferences with that money and so forth. And so that's how TransAfrica Forum got started. I switched over and became part of that board. So TransAfrica in that period was a very important organization because it--then, in the early 1980s we started to lead the movement against the apartheid system. It had already been doing some things, you know, in Southern Africa because in, in the 1970s, it was more Southern African than South Africa. It was Zimbabwe. It was Mozambique. It was Angola. It was, it was Zambia--Zambia and so forth. So southern Africa in the 1970s, but South Africa in the 1980s. And TransAfrica played a very strong role in both of those eras.$Reparations. What are we owed? Are we owed something by the United States or by the--are we owed by the individuals or the government? Or who owes us?$$Well, let me say, say it like this. I was part of the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations, the forum in 1986, the original Board of Directors. And I joined NCOBRA [National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America] at that point because, not only did I believe in the truth of what Queen Mother Moore was saying, but she wasn't the only person saying it. I mean that John Henry [formerly Henrik] Clark, other people understood that there was such a thing as the need for reparations.$$And NCOBRA is?$$As I said, the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America [NCOBRA]. And so I, I've believed that for a long time. The--in the 19-, the mid-19--let's see, '90s [1990] there was a conference in Abuja, Nigeria that was put together by the Organization of African Unity [OAU]. And I became the chair of the American delegation to that meeting. And that, there were about five hundred delegates to that meeting from really all over the world. The, most of them came from the continent of Africa. And this was unique. The OAU [Organization of African Unity] put together a, what they called an Eminent Persons Committee to chair this conference. And the chair of that group was Chief Abiola--Arella [sic], who--Abiola was a very powerful businessman in Nigeria who was running for President. And I said "Arella [ph]"--that's somebody else. But this is Chief Abiola, Moshood [Kashimawo Olawale] Abiola. And he was thrown in jail by the regime after 1996 and subsequently he died in prison.$$It was the Sani Abacha--$$The Sani Abacha [regime] did this, and [General] Sani Abacha, of course, was fearful of the fact that here was somebody who actually had won an election. And he was going to have leave power. And so rather than do that, he declared the election null and void. And he put Abiola in jail. And so this was, this was, this meeting in Abuja happened before all of that. And, as a matter of fact, at the time, he was campaigning. And he asked if I would campaign with him in northern Nigeria--that's where Abuja is. And so after the meeting there, he wanted us to go and, and campaign throughout northern Nigeria. I couldn't do that, but I could see how powerful and popular he was in northern Nigeria. And I felt then that he was going to win the election. That meeting was important in the sense that it discussed the African side of the reparations question, talked about in broad terms, about the fact that Africans had been, not only enslaved, because we tend to focus on slavery outside of Africa, but the spoilage of the African continent in terms of its resources and its society and so forth, I mean that aspect of it, people don't focus in on. The whole process of world imperialism and colonialism as part of what happened to Africa, slavery was a part of that, was a part of that. So we discussed a lot of things having to do with the question of, you know, who was owed an apology and whether or not Africans ought to apologize to African Americans for their role in slavery. And we discussed a lot of these things. And what form would reparations take and, and who should be held accountable, France and, and Britain and so forth, even Germany for their roll in southwest Africa and so forth.$$Can you take some parts of that and examine them in a way?$$Sure.$$This is something, there's a lot of general talk in the community about these things. And there's not a lot of, there's still not a lot of information out here by which people can really make a clear decision about things sometimes. I mean it exists, but you don't find it, you know, in the minds of most people. But, for instance, the case that Africans owe us an apology, as if we were already African Americans and they sold--you know, when people were sold or something or that they had a, set up a market basically to sell certain people to Europe or something. I mean are these valid (unclear) (simultaneous)--$$I don't think they're valid arguments primarily because you, if you, all you have to do is look at the comparison between Eastern slavery, which existed for centuries, and Western slavery. Western slavery, chattel slavery made a human being into a thing, a piece of merchandise. That would have happened if you had not had the intervention of Europeans into the slave system. It would not have happened if they had not fueled it with money and weapons and rum and the sort of things that were used to actually get people fighting so that they could then deliver human beings to a system and carry them away. So when you think about an apology, you have to put it on a scale. And you have to ask yourself, well, well, who owes the greatest apology. I would accept, and, and some of the African leaders have apologized, Bennein, for example, Senegal, some of the heads of some of the others have apologized, Uganda in the 1970s. But these are, are feeble things from my standpoint. When you look at the massive, massive global involvement of Europeans in the system of slavery and what it wrought.$$But wouldn't there have been an international slave trade without European involvement?$$That's what I mean by massive. The Portuguese for example. I've been to Brazil many times. When you look at Brazil and the fact that there are three times as many Africans transported to Brazil than there was through the United States, you get a sense of the massiveness of this enterprise participated in by Europeans. And so to me, it's, it's ridiculous to think about Africans sort of owing a great debt when the continent itself was so destroyed by this process, by European imperialism. And, of course, Africans have not been able to raise themselves up even today to the point where, even if they did apologize, one couldn't expect reasonably anything from them because they have still, they are still under the yoke of a lot of the control and direction of their economies from Europe, even this minute.$$Okay, let see, now, then, like who then would owe reparations?$$Well, I think it's obviously the European countries. I mean when one looks at the nature of the poverty in Africa, as I said, you can't expect anything there. I think that it's the people who in the United States, who benefited from the slave trade and who were the merchants of the cotton and the iron ore and the turpentine and the steel and many of the things where the slave, slavery was used. It is also not just the material question as far as I'm concerned--I'm writing a book right now called 'The Politics of Black Memory' in which I'm, I'm looking at the myth of Mount Rushmore [South Dakota] and the fact that in the minds of many people, that's how America was built, that Africans are not up there, Native Americans, Hispanics are not up there on Mount Rushmore [South Dakota]. So there is not a sense that these people also contributed greatly to the making of America. So a lot of what reparations is about to me, is not just a question of the demand for resources, it's a question of the rehabilitation of the self, the rehabilitation of the nation, the reworking and remaking of history, of the history of the Nation so that people get a realistic view of how America was constructed. I think if that happens, you know, it would give people a sense of humility, rather than arrogance about race, about this country, about the inclusionary concept of Democracy and so forth and so on. So there's some stakes here, it seems to me, that are extremely important in terms of reparations which don't just redound to black people in that respect.$$Now, well, individual--individuals have argued and surprisingly, black and white, that how can you make, you know, White people pay for slavery, this happened so long ago, you know. And is that the goal, to make white people pay for slavery?$$Well, I belong to the Reparations Coordinating Committee [RCC], which is a group that was founded by Randall Robinson and whose head of TransAfrica around 1997. And it is the view of this group that, that the individual American citizen is not culpable in that sense. And the reason for that is that, slavery at every step of its evolution in this country, was authorized by word of law. Whether we're talking about colonial aspects of slavery before the making of America or we're talking about colonial law, that involved the British, or if you're talking about the constitution of the United or anything that happened after that. You're talking about the fact that the government was intimately involved in legitimizing this practice. So if, we feel that is primarily an issue of, of governmental responsibility. Some of the groups have taken out after corporations because they profited handsomely, from insuring slaves and so forth and so on. And so I think that that's a proper thing to do as well, but in terms of the, of the basic responsibility, I think the basic responsibility is one of the government.