In Memoriam

In Memoriam: Vernon Eulion Jordan Jr., 1935 to 2021

In Memoriam: Vernon Eulion Jordan Jr., 1935 to 2021

As a young attorney, Jordan worked on the legal battle to desegregate the University of Georgia. He later led the United Negro College Fund and the National Urban League

In Memoriam Ralph Reavis Sr., 1940-2021

In Memoriam Ralph Reavis Sr., 1940-2021

Dr. Reavis was the pastor of several churches and taught for more than two decades at Virginia Union University. In 2000, he was named president of his alma mater, now called Virginia University of Lynchburg. He served in that role until 2015.

In Memoriam: Edward W. Crosby, 1932-2021

In Memoriam: Edward W. Crosby, 1932-2021

Dr. Crosby joined the faculty at Kent State University in 1969. There he founded the Institute for African American Affairs, which later became the department of Pan-African studies. He led the Black studies programs at the university for a quarter century.

In Memoriam: James Lee Conyers Jr., 1961-2021

In Memoriam: James Lee Conyers Jr., 1961-2021

Dr. Conyers, who began his career teaching at the University of Nebraska-Omaha, joined the faculty at the University of Houston in 2002. He has been credited with shaping and transforming the University of Houston’s African American studies program.

In Memoriam: Stephan Mickle, 1944-2021

In Memoriam: Stephan Mickle, 1944-2021

Judge Mickle taught at the Univerity of Florida College of Law for 38 years. He was the first African American to earn a bachelor’s degree and the second African Americans to earn a law degree from the University of Florida.

In Memoriam: Quincy L. Robertson, 1934-2021

In Memoriam: Quincy L. Robertson, 1934-2021

Quincy Robinson served on the staff at Paine College in Augusta, Georgia for 32 years, retiring in 1999 as chief financial officer.

In Memoriam: Dollye Mary Emily Robinson, 1927-2020

In Memoriam: Dollye Mary Emily Robinson, 1927-2020

Robinson began her career at Jackson State University in Mississippi in 1952 as the assistant band director and instructor of music. After a 60-year career at the university, she was named dean emerita in 2012.

In Memoriam: Ira Hicks Jr., 1928-2021

In Memoriam: Ira Hicks Jr., 1928-2021

Dr. Hicks served as a vocational instructor for 22 years before joining the faculty at his alma mater Fort Valley State University in 1971.

In Memoriam: Reginald Wilson, 1927-2020

In Memoriam: Reginald Wilson, 1927-2020

Dr. Wilson taught and was director of the Upward Bound program at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan, founded and directed the Black studies program at the University of Detroit Mercy, and was president of Wayne County Community College for 10 years.

In Memoriam: Miriam DeCosta-Willis, 1934-2021

In Memoriam: Miriam DeCosta-Willis, 1934-2021

Nearly, a decade after she was not allowed to enroll at what is now the University of Memphis because of the color of her skin, Dr. Decosta-Wilis was hired as the university’s first Black faculty member. She also taught at Lemoyne-Owen College in Memphis, Howard University in Washington, D.C., George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

In Memoriam: James Carmichael Renick, 1948-2021

In Memoriam: James Carmichael Renick, 1948-2021

During a long career as a faculty member and administrator in higher education, Dr. Renick served as chancellor of North Carolina A&T State University and the University of Michigan-Dearborn and was provost at Jackson State University in Mississippi.

In Memoriam: Herman Wadsworth Hemingway, 1932-2020

In Memoriam: Herman Wadsworth Hemingway, 1932-2020

Herman Hemingway, a lawyer, educator, civil rights activist, was the first Black graduate of Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts. He taught for more than two decades at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

In Memoriam: Jacqueline E. Fuller Certion, 1972-2020

In Memoriam: Jacqueline E. Fuller Certion, 1972-2020

Jacqueline Certion was the assistant director of the Foundations for Academic Success Track, or FASTrack, in the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Mississippi. In her position, Certion served as an adviser and mentor for thousands of students over the past 19 years.

In Memoriam: Theodore Carter DeLaney Jr., 1943-2020

In Memoriam: Theodore Carter DeLaney Jr., 1943-2020

In 1963, Theodore Carter DeLaney Jr. was hired as a janitor at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia. He became a full-time student in 1983. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in history in 1985 at the age of 42. After earning a Ph.D., in 1995, he joined the faculty at the university.

In Memoriam: Walter Harris Jr., 1947-2020

In Memoriam: Walter Harris Jr., 1947-2020

In 2003, Dr. Harris came to Loyola as provost and vice president for academic affairs and served in that capacity through 2008.  He was provost at Loyola when Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans and helped students relocate to universities across the country.

In Memoriam: William E. Moore, 1941-2020

In Memoriam: William E. Moore, 1941-2020

After being the first African American to earn a Ph.D. in chemistry at Purdue University, Dr. Moore joined the chemistry faculty at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in the late 1960s. He achieved the rank of full professor within five years.

In Memoriam: Leith Patricia Mullings, 1945-2020

In Memoriam: Leith Patricia Mullings, 1945-2020

After teaching for six years at Columbia University, Dr. Mullings joined the faculty at the City University of New York in 1983. There she eventually became a distinguished professor of anthropology at the City University of New York’s Graduate Center.

In Memoriam: Edward Joseph Perkins, 1928-2020

In Memoriam: Edward Joseph Perkins, 1928-2020

Edward J. Perkins was the first African Amerian to serve as ambassador to the Republic of South Africa and later taught at the University of Oklahoma.

In Memoriam: Melvin Richardson Todd, 1933-2020

In Memoriam: Melvin Richardson Todd, 1933-2020

After many years as an administrator in Oklahoma public schools, in 1975, Dr. Todd went to work in the Chancellor’s Office of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, eventually becoming vice chancellor for academic affairs.

In Memoriam: Alphonso Walter Grant, 1970-2020

In Memoriam: Alphonso Walter Grant, 1970-2020

Dr. Grant joined the faculty at the University of Arkansas in 2017 as a visiting professor of art education. He also was affiliated with the African and African American studies, political science, and gender studies programs at the university.

In Memoriam: Roosevelt D. Steptoe, 1934-2020

In Memoriam: Roosevelt D. Steptoe, 1934-2020

Dr. Steptoe led the flagship campus of the Southern University System from 1975 to 1982. Later, he served as vice president for academic affairs at Alabama State University in Montgomery.

In Memoriam: Walter Edward Williams, 1936-2020

In Memoriam: Walter Edward Williams, 1936-2020

Walter E. Williams was the conservative economist, syndicated newspaper columnist, and long-time professor at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. He died on December 2, shortly after teaching his last class.

In Memoriam: Millie Ruth McClelland Charles, 1923-2020

In Memoriam: Millie Ruth McClelland Charles, 1923-2020

Millie Charles was the founder of the School of Social Work at Southern University in New Orleans, Louisiana. She served on the faculty at the university for 40 years.

In Memoriam: Mary Levi Smith, 1936-2020

In Memoriam: Mary Levi Smith, 1936-2020

Mary L. Smith was the first woman to serve as president of historically Black Kentucky State University. Dr. Smith served as the eleventh president of the university from 1991 to 1998.

In Memoriam: Drew Saunders Days III, 1941-2020

In Memoriam: Drew Saunders Days III, 1941-2020

Drew S. Days III was the Alfred M. Rankin Professor of Law at Yale Law School. He led the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department during the Carter administration and was Solicitor General of the United States during the Clinton administration.

In Memoriam: David Norton Dinkins, 1927-2020

In Memoriam: David Norton Dinkins, 1927-2020

David Dinkins was the 106th mayor of New York City and the first African American to lead the city. He also was a professor in the practice of public policy at the School of Public and International Affairs at Columbia University.

In Memoriam: Gary Lynn Harris, 1953-2020

In Memoriam: Gary Lynn Harris, 1953-2020

Gary L. Harris was professor of electrical engineering, former dean of the Graduate School and associate provost for research at Howard University. He was one of the first two African Americans to earn a Ph.D. in electrical engineering at Cornell University.

In Memoriam: Jacqueline Rosemarie Satchell, 1968-2020

In Memoriam: Jacqueline Rosemarie Satchell, 1968-2020

A native of Jamaica, Jacqueline Rosemarie Satchell was an assistant professor of medicine and a leading clinician-educator in the Yale Section of General Internal Medicine and Veterans Administration’s Connecticut Healthcare System.

In Memoriam: James S. Jackson, 1944-2020

In Memoriam: James S. Jackson, 1944-2020

 James S. Jackson was the Daniel Katz Distinguished University Professor of Psychology, Emeritus, at the University of Michigan. He also held appointments as a professor of Afro-American and African studies and as a research professor at the Institute for Social Research at the university.

In Memoriam: Mary Turner Harper, 1935-2020

In Memoriam: Mary Turner Harper, 1935-2020

After teaching in the public schools, Dr. Turner joined the faculty at Barber-Scotia College in Concord, North Carolina, and Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte. In 1971, she was the first African American to join the English department at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

In Memoriam: Carolyn Sundy, 1951-2020

In Memoriam: Carolyn Sundy, 1951-2020

More than 40 years ago, Dr. Sundy joined the staff at Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College to head up the college’s Upward Bound program.

In Memoriam: Viralene Johnson Coleman, 1928-2020

In Memoriam: Viralene Johnson Coleman, 1928-2020

Professor Coleman served for 37 years as an English and literature teacher at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. In 1969, she was the first African American to earn a Ph.D. at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.

In Memoriam: Russell Boone, 1921-2020

In Memoriam: Russell Boone, 1921-2020

In 1960, Russell Boone was appointed director of university bands at Mississippi Valley State University. During his tenure, the band was the first ensemble from a historically Black college or university to play in the Rose Bowl parade. The band also played in the inaugural parade for President Richard Nixon in 1969.

In Memoriam: Stanley Lawrence Crouch, 1945-2020

In Memoriam: Stanley Lawrence Crouch, 1945-2020

A native of Los Angeles, Crouch joined the English department faculty at Pomona College in 1967 at the age of 22. He went on to become one of the most famous and controversial jazz critics in the nation.

In Memoriam: Frederick Charles Tillis, 1930-2020

In Memoriam: Frederick Charles Tillis, 1930-2020

Frederick C. Tillis was professor emeritus of music and former director of the Fine Arts Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. His more than 100 compositions include works for piano and voice, orchestra and chorus, solo, and chamber music.

In Memoriam: Woodson H. Hopewell Jr., 1954-2020

In Memoriam: Woodson H. Hopewell Jr., 1954-2020

Over a 44-year career at Hampton, Woodson Hopewell served as assistant director of student activities, director of student activities, and dean of men. In 2015, Hopewell was appointed dean of judicial affairs and housing.