In Memoriam: Nathaniel B. White Jr., 1945-2021

Nathaniel White, one of the first five undergraduate students at Duke University and a former administrator at Morehouse College in Atlanta, died on March 19. He was 75 years old.

Born and raised in Durham, North Carolina, in 1963, White – along with Wilhelmina Reuben-Cooke, Gene Kendall, Mary Mitchell Harris, and Cassandra Smith Rush – matriculated at Duke University in 1963. White was the last surviving member of this pioneering group of Black students.

White earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Duke in 1967. After graduation, he pursued graduate work in mathematical statistics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

In 1969, White was accepted as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Public Health Service. He began working in epidemiology at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and what is now the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

From 1993 to 2007, White served as director of the Public Health Sciences Institute and director of the Office of Sponsored Research at Morehouse College.


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