In Memoriam

In Memoriam Wilbert Greenfield, 1933-2019

In Memoriam Wilbert Greenfield, 1933-2019

Dr. Wilbert Greenfield became the tenth president of Johnson C. Smith University in 1973 and served in that role until 1982. In 1984, the University’s board of trustees named a dormitory Wilbert Greenfield Hall in his honor.

In Memoriam: Gwendolyn Lytle

In Memoriam: Gwendolyn Lytle

Gwendolyn Lytle was a member of the music department faculty at Pomona College in Claremont, California, for 35 years. Earlier, she taught at the University of California, Riverside.

In Memoriam: McDonald Williams, 1917-2019

In Memoriam: McDonald Williams, 1917-2019

Dr. Williams served as director of the Honors Program at Tennessee State University for 23 years before his retirement in 1988. He also spent 30 years at the university serving as a professor of English.

In Memoriam: Paule Marshall, 1929-2019

In Memoriam: Paule Marshall, 1929-2019

Paule Marshall taught at both Virginia Commonwealth University and New York University. She authored numerous novels, essays, and works of short fiction.

In Memoriam: Roderick Earl Richardson, 1955-2019

In Memoriam: Roderick Earl Richardson, 1955-2019

In 1986, Roderick Richardson joined the staff at the University of Maryland College Park as a budget analyst. He retired from his position in 2015 due to ailing health.

In Memoriam: Julius S. Scott Jr., 1925 -2019

In Memoriam: Julius S. Scott Jr., 1925 -2019

Julius S. Scott Jr. served as president of two historically Black colleges and as interim president of several additional colleges and universities.

In Memoriam: Harrison B. Wilson Jr., 1925-2019

In Memoriam: Harrison B. Wilson Jr., 1925-2019

Dr. Wilson served as president of Norfolk State for 22 years. When he arrived on campus in 1975, the school only offered four graduate programs and enrolled 191 students. By the end of Dr. Wilson’s presidency in 1997, the university offered 14 master’s programs, one doctoral program, and enrolled 1,110 students.

In Memoriam: Andraé  Derrell Sailes, 1979-2019

In Memoriam: Andraé Derrell Sailes, 1979-2019

Sailes joined the staff at Purdue University in June 2004 as the assistant director of undergraduate admissions. He became director of academic and career advising for the College of Liberal Arts in 2016.

In Memoriam: David L. Ferguson, 1949-2019

In Memoriam: David L. Ferguson, 1949-2019

David L. Ferguson was department chair and Distinguished Service Professor of Technology and Society at Stony Brook University in New York. He had taught at the university since 1981.

In Memoriam: William Benjamin Ray Sr., 1925-2019

In Memoriam: William Benjamin Ray Sr., 1925-2019

After concluding his career as an opera performer, Ray taught for 10 years at the Peabody Conservatory at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. In 1992, Ray became director of the voice program at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

In Memoriam: Philip Freelon, 1952-2019

In Memoriam: Philip Freelon, 1952-2019

Philip Freelon was an educator, architect, and a key figure in the design of the National Museum of African American History and Culture. He served as a professor of practice at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

In Memoriam: Rita Roberts Jones, 1934-2019

In Memoriam: Rita Roberts Jones, 1934-2019

Rita Jones began her career at Oakwood University in 1972 as dean of freshman women.

In Memoriam: Floyd L. Robinson

In Memoriam: Floyd L. Robinson

Floyd L. Robinson was the former band director, professor, and administrator at Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina. Upon his retirement in 2001, the university renamed its fine arts auditorium in his honor.

In Memoriam: Wright Lassiter Jr., 1934-2019

In Memoriam: Wright Lassiter Jr., 1934-2019

Dr. Lassiter was appointed chancellor of Dallas County Community College District in 2007. He was the first African American to hold the position. Earlier in his career, Dr. Lassiter served for 20 years as president of El Centro College in Dallas.

In Memoriam: Tchet Dereic Dorman, 1965-2019

In Memoriam: Tchet Dereic Dorman, 1965-2019

Dr. Dorman most recently served as a senior consultant for the American Cancer Society. Earlier in his career, Dr. Dorman was director of student support services at Temple University in Philadelphia.

In Memoriam: Adelaide Cromwell, 1919-2019

In Memoriam: Adelaide Cromwell, 1919-2019

Dr. Cromwell first joined the Boston University faculty in 1951. Two years later, she co-founded the university’s African Studies Center. In 1969, she founded the university’s African American studies program, the country’s second such program and the first to offer a graduate degree in the subject.

In Memoriam: Byrdie Annette Larkin, 1952-2019

In Memoriam: Byrdie Annette Larkin, 1952-2019

Dr. Larkin joined the faculty at Alabama State University in 1977. At the time, she was the only women faculty member in the department of political science. She taught at the university for 39 years until her retirement in 2016.

In Memoriam: Niara Sudarkasa, 1938-2019

In Memoriam: Niara Sudarkasa, 1938-2019

In 1969, Dr. Sudarkasa joined the faculty at the University of Michigan. She was the first tenured African American faculty member at the university. In 1986, she was appointed the eleventh president of historically Black Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, and served in that role for 12 years.

In Memoriam: Olivia Cousins, 1948-2019

In Memoriam: Olivia Cousins, 1948-2019

Olivia Cousins was a feminist scholar, African American historian, and long-time faculty member at the Borough of Manhattan Community College of the City University of New York. She served on the faculty there for more than 30 years.

In Memoriam: Maurice Wilton Johnson Sr., 1943-2019

In Memoriam: Maurice Wilton Johnson Sr., 1943-2019

Johnson served for 10 years at Grambling State University in Louisiana, first as assistant director of bands and then director of bands.

In Memoriam: Walter Robinson, 1953-2019

In Memoriam: Walter Robinson, 1953-2019

Walter Robinson had retired from his position as associate vice chancellor of enrollment management at the University of California, Davis last September. He had a career in admissions and enrollment management in higher education that spanned nearly 40 years.

In Memoriam: Maurice Stallworth Cherry

In Memoriam: Maurice Stallworth Cherry

Dr. Cherry served as chaplain at Paine College in Augusta, Georgia, from 1959 to 1975. While there, he and his wife, the late Dr. Joyce Cherry, served as professors. Additionally, he served as president of Texas College and was a professor at what is now Albany State University.

In Memoriam: Margaret Asalele Mbilzi-Sawerengera

In Memoriam: Margaret Asalele Mbilzi-Sawerengera

Dr. Mbilzi-Sawerengera, the wife of the Malawi ambassador to the United States, served as an associate professor of educational policy and research at D’Youville College in Buffalo, New York, an assistant professor of higher education at Northern Illinois University, and an assistant professor of foundations of education at the University of West Alabama.

In Memoriam: LaSalle Doheny Leffall Jr., 1930-2019

In Memoriam: LaSalle Doheny Leffall Jr., 1930-2019

LaSalle Leffall was a giant in African American education and was a leading cancer researcher. He chaired the department of surgery at the Howard University College of Medicine for a quarter century. Dr. Leffall was the first African American president of the American Cancer Society and the American College of Surgeons.

In Memoriam: Robert Wayne Bowles, 1943-2019

In Memoriam: Robert Wayne Bowles, 1943-2019

Robert W. Bowles was the former chair of the department of health and physical education and the former director of alumni affairs at Alcorn State University in Mississippi.

In Memoriam: William B. DeLauder, 1937-2019

In Memoriam: William B. DeLauder, 1937-2019

In 1987, Dr. DeLauder was named president of what was then Delaware State College. In 1993, the state General Assembly renamed the college as Delaware State University. Dr. DeLauder served as president until 2003.

In Memoriam: Shirley Bradley LeFlore, 1940-2019

In Memoriam: Shirley Bradley LeFlore, 1940-2019

In addition to serving as poet laureate for the city of St. Louis, LeFlore was an educator. She was the first African American assistant dean of students at what is now Webster University in Missouri.

In Memoriam: Onyekwere E. Akwari, 1942-2019

In Memoriam: Onyekwere E. Akwari, 1942-2019

Dr. Akwari was recruited to Duke after the university desegregated its hospital. He joined the faculty as an associate professor, making him the second African American tenure-track faculty member in the School of Medicine.

In Memoriam: Clifton Hennessee Kearney Sr., 1925-2019

In Memoriam: Clifton Hennessee Kearney Sr., 1925-2019

Clifton Hennesse Kearney Sr. was the director and coordinator of transfer students in the School of Engineering at Morgan State University. He served on the staff at the university for 31 years. He also chaired the Howard University Alumni Association.

In Memoriam: Martin Kilson, 1931-2019

In Memoriam: Martin Kilson, 1931-2019

Dr. Kilson first joined the faculty at Harvard in 1962 as a lecturer in government. He was promoted to assistant professor in 1967 and professor of government in 1969, making him the first Black full professor at Harvard.

In Memoriam: Leonard Lewis Brown, 1946-2019

In Memoriam: Leonard Lewis Brown, 1946-2019

Leonard Lewis Brown was an acclaimed saxophonist and associate professor emeritus of music and of African-American studies at Northeastern University in Boston. He served as co-director of the Afro-Caribbean Music Research Project and chair of the African American studies department at the university.

In Memoriam: Leonard "Chief" Tramiel, 1944-2019

In Memoriam: Leonard “Chief” Tramiel, 1944-2019

In 1973, Tramiel became director of university bands at Mississippi Valley State University. He retired from the university in 2013.

In Memoriam: Albert L. Walker, 1945-2019

In Memoriam: Albert L. Walker, 1945-2019

Dr. Walker was appointed president of Harris-Stowe State University in August 2011 and served in that role until his retirement in 2013. Earlier in his career, he served as president of Bluefield College in West Virginia.

In Memoriam: Donald Stewart, 1938-2019

In Memoriam: Donald Stewart, 1938-2019

Dr. Stewart served as the sixth president of historically Black Spelman College in Atlanta from 1977 to 1986. He left Spelman College to become president of The College Board.

In Memoriam: Lorraine Elizabeth Green Branham, 1952-2019

In Memoriam: Lorraine Elizabeth Green Branham, 1952-2019

A long-time journalist Lorraine Branham became dean of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in New York in 2008.

In Memoriam: Kavin Grant, 1981-2019

In Memoriam: Kavin Grant, 1981-2019

Kavin Grant, an associate professor of dance at Alabama State University, recently was killed in a car accident. Earlier in his career, he taught at West Chester University, Temple University, Penn State, the University of the Arts, the University of Akron, Rowan University, Muhlenberg College, and Jackson State University.