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Sadie Mossell was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to a prominent black Philadelphia family. Her father, Aaron Mossell, was the first African American to receive a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Her grandfather, Benjamin Tucker Tanner Tanner, edited the first black scholarly journal in the United States, the A.M.E. Church Review.

Mossell received her doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania in 1921. She worked as an actuary in North Carolina, then left to marry Raymond Pace Alexander, a graduate of Harvard Law School. With her husband's encouragement, she returned to the University of Pennsylvania, earning her law degree in 1927. The two entered law practice together. Their civil rights work began in 1935 when husband and wife fought to end racial segregation in Philadelphia The Alexanders visited segregated city theaters hotels and restaurants to demand rightful admittance under law and agitated for ...

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Nancy Elizabeth Fitch

Alexander, Sadie Tanner Mossell (03 January 1898–01 November 1989), economist and lawyer, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the daughter of Aaron Mossell, an attorney and the first black graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and Mary Tanner. While a young girl her father abandoned the family, and she was raised by her mother with the assistance of relatives.

Alexander received her degrees from the University of Pennsylvania With her Ph D in economics awarded in 1921 she became the first African American woman to receive a doctorate in economics and among the first three African American women to receive a doctorate in any field in the United States Her doctoral dissertation The Standard of Living among One Hundred Negro Migrant Families in Philadelphia was a thorough social survey investigating spending patterns from 1916 to 1918 of African American migrant families newly arrived from the South ...

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Lia B. Epperson

attorney and civil rights activist, was born Sadie Tanner Mossell in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the youngest of three children of Aaron Albert Mossell Jr., an attorney, and Mary Louise Tanner. In 1899 Mossell's father deserted the family and fled to Wales. During elementary school Sadie and her mother divided their time between Mossell's grandparents' home in Philadelphia and an aunt and uncle's home on the campus of Howard University in Washington, D.C. When her mother returned to Pennsylvania, Mossell remained under the care of her aunt and uncle in Washington until she graduated from M Street High School.

Mossell entered the University of Pennsylvania in the fall of 1915 and majored in education Her years as a student in an institution with so few women students and even fewer African Americans were extremely challenging Yet with her family s financial and emotional support she prospered academically and graduated ...

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Alexander, the first black woman to earn a PhD in Economics, in a 1981 interview provided this advice for young black men and women: “Don’t let anything stop you. There will be times when you’ll be disappointed, but you can’t stop. Make yourself the best that you can make out of what you are. The very best.”

Sadie Tanner Mossell was born into a prominent Philadelphia family. Her father, Aaron Albert Mossell, had been the first African American to receive a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania. Her grandfather, Benjamin Tucker Tanner, was a well-known author, a bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and the editor of the country’s first African American scholarly journal, the African Methodist Episcopal Review. The famous painter Henry Ossawa Tanner was her uncle At the turn of the century the Tanner home was a gathering place and intellectual center ...

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Daniel Donaghy

lawyer and economist. Roger Walton Ferguson was born in Washington, D.C., to a supervisory cartographer with the U.S. Army Map Service and an elementary school teacher. He was raised in the District of Columbia's Northeast section and attended public school until his parents enrolled him at Sidwell Friends School, an exclusive independent school that serves primarily elite Washington, D.C., families. There Ferguson first became interested in economics and finance. He had observed his father buying Treasury securities and was familiar from an early age with Wall Street and the Federal Reserve.

After graduating from high school, Ferguson attended Harvard University, where he studied economics and supported himself by working as a campus janitor. He graduated magna cum laude and spent a year in England at Cambridge University's Pembroke College before returning to Harvard to earn a law degree (1979) and a PhD in economics (1981 ...

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Haggai Erlich

Egyptian politician, lawyer, economist, cabinet minister, and prime minister, was born in May 1888 to an urban landowning family long involved in politics. His father was Muhammad Mahir, former undersecretary of state for war, and his older brother was Ali Mahir, also a politician. Ahmad Mahir graduated from the Khedivial Law School and then went to France to pursue doctoral studies at the University of Montpellier. Back home, he taught at the law school and the Higher School of Commerce before quitting his academic career during the 1919 Revolution to become one of the closest and most loyal aides of Saʿd Zaghlul. As such, he was one of the founders of the Wafd Party and responsible for organizing its “secret apparatus,” the body tasked with applying violent measures against the British occupiers and the party’s rivals. When the Wafd won the first constitutional elections in January 1924 Mahir was ...