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Stacey Hamilton

Brown, Ron (01 August 1941–03 April 1996), secretary of commerce and Democratic party leader, was born Ronald Harmon Brown in Washington, D.C., the son of William Brown, who worked for the New Deal–era Federal Housing and Home Finance Agency, and Gloria Elexine Brown. In 1947 the family moved to Harlem in New York City, where William Brown had been hired as the manager of the famed Hotel Theresa, the lodging of choice for celebrated black musicians, civic leaders, athletes, and writers. Ron spent much of his youth there, soaking up the rich cultural life of the hotel and meeting many of its famous residents. On graduating in 1958 from Rhodes, a private preparatory school in Manhattan, he entered Middlebury College in Vermont, becoming one of only three black students in the school and the first black to be initiated into his fraternity.

A fair student Brown was ...

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Ronald Walters

Democratic Party activist and cabinet secretary, was born Ronald Harmon Brown at Freedmen's Hospital in Washington, D.C., the son of William Brown, who worked for the Federal Housing and Home Finance Agency, and Gloria Elexine Carter. The Browns moved to Harlem, New York, in 1947, and Ron grew up in the famed Theresa Hotel, where his father was manager. Joe Louis was a frequent guest, and gave young Ron the nickname “Little Brown.” Ron showed his entrepreneurial skills at an early age by getting autographs of Louis, Sugar Ray Robinson and other celebrity guests at the Theresa and selling them for five dollars each to his friends His parents both graduates of Howard University set Ron on a solid path to join the black middle class which became in many ways the social network that would make possible many of his achievements As a child he ...

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Mohammed Badrul Alam

the first African American secretary of commerce and the first African American chairman of a national political party. Ron Brown was born in Washington, D.C., on 1 August 1941 and was raised in the Harlem section of New York City. He attended Middlebury College, where he was the first African American member of Sigma Phi Epsilon, a national men's collegiate fraternity that for a long time had accepted only white Christians. Upon graduation from Middlebury, Brown joined the U.S. Army in 1962 and served with distinction in Europe and South Korea. After being honorably discharged in 1967, he joined the National Urban League, one of the premier groups in the United States espousing equality. He also earned a law degree from St. John's University in 1970.

Because of his organizational and oratorical skills, Brown was appointed deputy campaign manager for Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts who ...

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Alonford James Robinson

Born in Washington, D.C., Ron Brown grew up in Harlem, New York. He graduated from Middlebury College in Vermont in 1962, after becoming the first black student to pledge a fraternity there. He enlisted in the United States Army. After his service, Brown worked for the National Urban League in New York while earning his law degree at night from St. John's University in 1970. He held several positions in the Urban League from 1968 to 1979, including general counsel, chief Washington spokesperson, deputy executive director, and vice president of Washington operations.

In Washington, D.C., Brown became active in the Democratic Party, and in 1979 he served as deputy manager of U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy's presidential campaign. A year later Kennedy appointed him the chief counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee. In 1982 Brown resigned from the senate committee to become deputy ...