In Memoriam: Dorothy James Orr, 1920-2015

orrDorothy James Orr, a civil rights activist, university professor, and higher education commissioner, died late last month. She was 95 years old.

A native of Pennsylvania, Orr graduated from Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania. She went on to earn a master of social work degree at Atlanta University.

Orr was the first African American woman to serve as a vice president at the Equitable Life Assurance Society. She later became a commissioner for the New York State Division of Human Rights and for the accrediting body, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Orr taught at Fordham University in The Bronx, New York and was vice chair of the African American Leadership Forum for Education Policy at Pace University in New York.


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