In Memoriam

Georgene Louise Carter (1931-2006)

Georgene Louise Carter, former chair of the department of education at Edward Waters College, the historically black educational institution in Jacksonville, Florida, died earlier this month in Augusta, Georgia. She was 75 years old.

Carter, a native of Augusta, graduated from Paine College at the age of 19. She later earned a master’s degree at New York University. Carter initially taught elementary school in Georgia but after relocating to Florida she took teaching positions at Bethune-Cookman College and Edward Waters College. She later served as an administrator for the Duval County public school system in Jacksonville, Florida.

Linda Faye Williams (1949-2006)

Linda Faye Williams, a professor of government and politics at the University of Maryland and the first black undergraduate to earn a degree at Rice University, died from a heart attack late last month in Olney, Maryland. She was 57 years old.

Professor Williams was born in the small town of Lovelady in East Texas. She attended a segregated high school at which both her mother and father held teaching positions. Going against her father’s advice, in 1966 she applied to Rice University, whose original charter restricted admissions to members of the white race. The year in which Williams applied, Rice had won a court order permitting the university to rescind the racial covenant in its charter in order that it could admit black students. Williams graduated from Rice University in 1970. She won a prestigious Woodrow Wilson fellowship and earned master’s and Ph.D. degrees in political science from the University of Chicago.

Beginning in 1977 Williams spent a decade teaching political science at Howard University. She then gave up her tenured position to become associate director of research at the Joint Center for Political Studies, the black think tank in Washington, D.C. She later served as a research fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

In 1991 Professor Williams joined the faculty at the University of Maryland where she was promoted to full professor in 2004. Her 2004 book Constraint of Race: Legacies of White Skin Privilege in America won the award for best book on a race-related topic from the American Political Science Association.

Professor Williams is survived by her husband Ralph C. Gomes, a professor of sociology at Howard University.