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Dr. Sharon Malone

Obstetrician, gynecologist and public figure Sharon Malone was born in 1959 in Mobile, Alabama to a domestic servant and a maintenance worker for Brookley Air Force Base. Malone is the youngest of eight siblings and the sister of Vivian Malone Jones, who, in 1963, became one of the first African American students to enroll at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. In 1981, Malone received her B.A. degree in psychology from Harvard University.

Upon graduation, she pursued a career as a systems engineer with the IBM Corporation, but soon decided to attend medical school at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons, where she earned her M.D. degree in 1988. That same year, Malone moved to Washington, D.C. to complete her medical residency at George Washington University. Then, in 1992, she went into private practice with the renowned Foxhall OB/GYN in Washington, D.C. Malone has also served as an associate clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the George Washington University, and presented the 2012 PBS documentary, Slavery by Another Name, which charts the violent transition in 1865 from chattel slavery to forced prison labor.

Malone serves on the boards of the D.C. Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy and Historic Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C. She also serves on the regional panel for the selection of White House Fellows Program and was appointed to the selection committee for the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction awarded by the University of Alabama School of Law. In addition, Malone has consistently been voted one of Washingtonian magazine’s “Best Doctors.”

Malone is married to Eric Holder, the first African American Attorney General of the United States. They live in Washington, D.C. with their three children, Maya, Brooke, and Eric III.

Sharon Malone was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 23, 2014.

Accession Number

A2014.110

Sex

Female

Interview Date

3/23/2014

Last Name

Malone

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Harvard University

Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

St. Joseph's School

Most Pure Heart of Mary School

Emory University

W. P. Davidson High School

Most Pure Heart of Mary Catholic School

First Name

Sharon

Birth City, State, Country

Mobile

HM ID

MAL08

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Alabama

Favorite Vacation Destination

Turks and Caicos

Favorite Quote

There Are No Accidents In The Universe.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

1/30/1959

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Shrimp Creole

Short Description

Obstetrician and gynecologist Dr. Sharon Malone (1959 - ) practiced in the Washington, D.C. area for over twenty years.

Employment

IBM

George Washington University

Foxhall OB/GYN

Favorite Color

Peach

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Dr. Sharon Malone's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Dr. Sharon Malone lists her favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her maternal ancestor, William J. Edwards, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her maternal ancestor, William J. Edwards, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Dr. Sharon Malone lists her siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes how her parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her light complexion

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her early education

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her experiences at a black Catholic school

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her early awareness of color discrimination

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her sister's admission to the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her sister's first day at the University of Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her sister's experiences at the University of Alabama

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her home life

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Dr. Sharon Malone remembers her early experiences of religion

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her family's holiday celebrations

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her early personality

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes the sights, smells and sounds of her childhood

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her mother's employment

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls the death of her mother

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Dr. Sharon Malone remembers living with her sister after her mother's death

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls living with her brother in Dallas, Texas

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Dr. Sharon Malone remembers returning to her father's home in Mobile, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her experiences at W.P. Davidson High School in Mobile, Alabama

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her experiences at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her decision to transfer to Harvard University

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her preparation for college

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her experiences at Harvard University

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her early aspirations to become a doctor

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about majoring in psychology at Harvard University

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her first job in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls her decision to attend the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her experiences at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes her experiences at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Dr. Sharon Malone remembers moving to Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Dr. Sharon Malone recalls the start of her relationship with Eric H. Holder, Jr.

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about balancing her family and career

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Dr. Sharon Malone remembers raising her children

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her social life in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her medical practice, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her focus on patient care

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her medical practice, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Dr. Sharon Malone reflects upon her medical career

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about the changes in obstetrics and gynecology

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about the challenges of practicing medicine

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about medical malpractice lawsuits

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her husband's appointment as U.S. attorney general, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her husband's appointment as U.S. attorney general, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Dr. Sharon Malone describes the challenges of her husband's role as U.S. attorney general

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about coping with having a public life

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Dr. Sharon Malone reflects upon the Obama administration

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about the book 'Slavery By Another Name'

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her paternal uncle

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about the post-Reconstruction era

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Dr. Sharon Malone talks about researching her genealogy

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Dr. Sharon Malone reflects upon her legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Dr. Sharon Malone reflects upon the legacy of her generation

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Dr. Sharon Malone narrates her photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Dr. Sharon Malone narrates her photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$6

DAStory

3$3

DATitle
Dr. Sharon Malone describes her sister's first day at the University of Alabama
Dr. Sharon Malone talks about her paternal uncle
Transcript
Vivian [Vivian Malone Jones] was an amazingly courageous woman, young woman. And I think about that, and I think about that a lot now, because was--I have a daughter [Maya Holder] who is the age that Vivian was when she went to the University of Alabama [Tuscaloosa, Alabama]. And I think as a parent--and I think about my parents [Bertha Davis Malone and Willie Malone], I said, now, it's 1963, and 1963 was, was a particularly violent year in Alabama. We had had, you know, Martin Luther King [Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.] had written a 'Letter from Birmingham Jail,' you know, the children's march [Children's Crusade] with all those iconic pictures of dogs being, you know, put on children and the fire hoses. This all happened the month before she was to challenge, you know, had to go and register at the University of Alabama. And so that June 11th with all of that in mind, she had to go and my parents couldn't go with her. The lawyers from the justice department [U.S. Department of Justice] said--they came and got Vivian and James [James Hood], and they were trying to--because they really had to rehearse, they had to prepare, you know, "What are you going to do if they spit on you, if they yell," whatever. You know, to kind of get them to settle down. You know, they'd never been in front of cameras before, and they were trying to, you know, walk them through that process, and they said, my parent, my parents shouldn't come. So that first week before the challenge actually took place, they had Vivian and James--they were staying at, literally, an undisclosed location, because the--two weeks before that the only hotel that they could have stayed at in Birmingham [Alabama], the Gaston hotel [A.G. Gaston Motel], was bombed. So they didn't want people to know where they were, and they were staying in private homes. They were staying at one of her lawyer's. They had a local counsel, Arthur Shores, who is a civil rights lawyer now in Birmingham. And Vivian stayed with his secretary, and James stayed with someone else, so if anybody wanted to get to them, they wouldn't know where they were. And they didn't surface until this actual--this confrontation, the day on June 11th. And my parents couldn't be there. And they didn't know--and as this whole thing was unfolding, this is before twenty-four hours news cycle and cell phones, my parents literally didn't know what happened. And I can't imagine it. That your daughter is--and you know what people are capable of doing. They've done it. And so they confront the governor [George Wallace]. There was no coverage in the press in Mobile [Alabama], my hometown. They didn't, they didn't mention it, because--I don't know why they didn't. They just didn't. They didn't cover it, so my parents had to wait, you know, wait that evening to get a phone call to see if everything was okay. And, you know, after confronting the governor and she made it through, and she got to her dorm, she thought, okay, I made it, you know. No one shot me on the way in or did anything. And that night, she went to bed and woke up the next morning, and that was the night that Medgar Evers was shot and killed in his driveway on that, after midnight, that same day. And that was also the day that John F. Kennedy [President John Fitzgerald Kennedy] made his--the president made his famous speech on race. The governor, they confronted the governor in the afternoon, Nick Katzenbach [Nicholas Katzenbach] was down there with her, the president made his famous speech on race; Medgar Evers was shot and killed. This is all in less than twelve hours on June 11th.$$That's amazing. And your par- you're right about parents back then, but, you know, there was--it was surprising, and that's not everyone 'cause we hear about the courage- you know, the ones that went forward. But there were a lot of people not, you know, that didn't have that courage, but there was--there was this belief that you, you know, to be the first to, to go ahead to try to make change. You know, there was a lot that.$But how did you unearth the story? That's what--okay. So I understa- is it through genea- so you, you described that, you know, you knew your uncle. He was crotchety or--$$Right.$$--you know.$$Right.$$But how do you unearth the story?$$Because, you know, it, it requires a little detective work, and my uncle, you know--this is my dad's older brother. So there was this family story about Uncle Henry [Henry Malone], and you know, how you--you always hear it, but you--it doesn't make any sense to you. Uncle Henry--so when you're talking about now, it can't be any more than the 1920s, early 1920s. And Uncle Henry used to always tell his grandkids and talk about--he said, that he had, that he had to serve a year and a day; a year and a day. And, you know, and we never understood. It was, like, that was a story I didn't hear probably until, you know, ten years ago. And it never dawned on me. When you serve a year and a day, and it's 1920 and you're black in Alabama. Where do you go? You know, there is no, there is no prison. There were no long term prison facilities for anybody to be put away. You have jail, and then from jail, from there you were parceled out to, you know, work. You were on a farm, you're on a chain gang. You were doing something, but you were not sitting around lifting weights in prison. And that's when the first time, you know, I had that aha moment. It's like, that explains a lot of Uncle Henry's behavior. You know, the fact that, you know, that he drank. That he was churlish and he was whatever. And he was just a, you know, and that's the only man I knew. Now, if you can imagine. I only knew my dad [Willie Malone] as an old man. I knew my dad's older brother as a very old man, and I, I never understood him. Never understood him. And, you know, when I found that story, I--it made a little bit more sense to me.$$So you were actually interviewed (cough), you know, for--so after Doug [Douglas A. Blackmon]--I'm sorry, did the book ['Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II'] and then you were actually--then there was the documentary ['Slavery by Another Name'].$$(Nods head).$$And so can you talk about that then?$$Yeah. The documentary actually came up, probably three years--three or four years after the--after he wrote the book. So he and I had been in contact, you know, for all that time. And every time I would find something out about my family history, you know, Doug and I would talk about it. He's a fascinating guy. So, and again, that's how we were in lockstep. And then when he was going back to try to find people, he said, "Would you mind telling your story, you know, about your uncle?" And that's how I got into that. But that was a good--a good three years after we'd established contact, and I read his book.