National Institute on Aging

Two Major Black Scholars Retiring From High-Ranking Universities

Willie Ruff, a professor at the Yale School of Music, is retiring after teaching at the university since 1971. He is 85 years old. Ruff is the founder and director of the Duke Ellington Foundation Program at the university. Professor Ruff learned to play the French horn in the U.S. Army. After finishing his military service, Ruff earned two master’s degrees at Yale. He then he joined Lionel Hampton’s band and soon collaborated with his friend, pianist Dwike Mitchell, to form the Mitchell-Ruff Duo. Ruff is the author of A Call to Assembly: The Autobiography of a Musical Storyteller (Viking Books, 1991).

Darlene Clark Hine, a professor of history and professor of African American studies at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, is retiring. Before joining the faculty at Northwestern University in 2004, Professor Hine taught at Michigan State University for 17 years. Professor Hine is the author or editor of many books including Hine Sight: Black Women and the Re-Construction of American History (Indiana University Press, 1996). She is a graduate of Roosevelt University in Chicago and holds a master’s degree and a Ph.D. from Kent State University in Ohio.


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  1. Charles Pete Banner-Haley says:

    Darlene Congratulations on a brilliant career! Enjoy retirement and be well in any new endeavors you take up, All the Best

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