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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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...


Jennifer Vaughn

author, educator, and economist, was born Richard Franklin America Jr. in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Richard Franklin America Sr. and Arline America. In 1960 America received a BS in Economics from Pennsylvania State University and in 1965 an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at Harvard University. Afterward, he joined the Stanford Research Institute in Menlo Park, California, where he worked for the next four years as a Development Economist in the Urban and Regional Economics Group.

In April 1969 America published “What Do You People Want?” in the Harvard Business Review In it he advocated major federal subsidies to facilitate economic equality and large scale participation of blacks in the corporate world and made suggestions as to how these goals might be accomplished including the transfer of corporations to black shareholders and managers The article offered a radical approach to policy pertaining to reparations and ...


An economist deeply involved in public policy and administration, Andrew Brimmer was appointed in 1966 as a governor of the Federal Reserve Board, where he served until 1974. He worked to alleviate unemployment, the national deficit, and racial discrimination. In 1969, when small businesses were suffering, Brimmer urged African Americans to forsake “black capitalist” ventures and pursue work in large mainstream companies instead. He proposed an income-tax reduction plan to President Gerald L. Ford in 1974; the following year, it became the basis of congressional legislation. In 1984, when black unemployment was double that of whites, Brimmer supported strategies that combined Affirmative Action with self-help.

Brimmer, the son of a sharecropper who struggled to make ends meet during the Great Depression, was born in Newellton, Louisiana After high school he joined the army where he became a staff sergeant Brimmer received a B A ...


Darius V. Echeverría

economist and educator. Some individuals are important because they exemplify the historical past, while others are important because they embody generational change toward social progress. As the first African American governor of the U.S. Federal Reserve Board (1966–1974), Andrew Felton Brimmer is both the former and the latter.

The life story of this extraordinary leader began on 13 September 1926 in Newellton, Louisiana. The son of Andrew Brimmer Sr., a sharecropper, and Vellar Davis Brimmer, a warehouse worker, Brimmer picked cotton as a child in rural northeastern Louisiana while attending segregated public schools. Rather than allowing the hardships of poverty and racial injustice to discourage him, Brimmer used these experiences as a motivating force. Early on he was determined to earn a college degree so that he could serve in positions where he could help others.

Brimmer graduated from high school in 1944 and ...


Owen J. M. Kalinga

leading economic thinker in Malawi’s decolonization movement, was born in Kaluli Village, Florence Bay (now Chitimba), in British Nyasaland. The area today forms the border of Malawi’s Karonga and Rumpi districts. Very early in his life, his family also lived at Kasoba, just north of Karonga boma, which he was later to adopt as his official second home. Chisiza, then known as Gladstone Dunduzu Kaluli Chisiza, went to Uliwa Junior Primary School and then to Khondowe, the Livingstonia Mission headquarters, where he completed standard six. In keeping with the reputation of the people of Nyasaland (now Malawi) as migrant workers, Chisiza left for Tanzania in 1949.

Chisiza found employment as a clerk in the Tanganyika police force but after a few months he departed for Uganda in search of further education He enrolled at Aggrey Memorial College a private school in Kampala that was also the home of Makerere ...


Rayford W. Logan

William H. Dean, Jr. was born on July 6, 1910, in Lynchburg, Virginia, the only son and the third of four children of the Rev. and Mrs. William Henry Dean, Sr. He spent his early years in Lynchburg, Virginia; Washington, D.C.; Baltimore, Maryland; and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where his father was a pastor in Methodist churches. In 1926 Dean graduated as valedictorian of his class from Douglass High School, Baltimore. Recipient of a scholarship from the Baltimore chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity, he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in his junior year at Bowdoin College in Maine and received his B.A. degree, graduating summa cum laude, in 1930. He earned his M.A. degree in 1932 and Ph.D. degree from Harvard University in Massachusetts in 1938; both degrees were in economics.

From 1933 to 1942 Dean taught economics and business administration at Atlanta ...


Jeremy Rich

politician and economist, was born in the town of Khombole, Senegal. His father worked as a railway employee and a policeman. Dia's mother was a member of a “ceddo” family known for its attachment to indigenous spiritual beliefs outside of orthodox Islamic traditions, but his father was from a family of Muslim scholars. Dia's father died when Dia was only ten years old, but his family succeeded in supporting his education. Dia's father could speak French, but was illiterate and never received any formal Western schooling. His willingness to openly complain about poor treatment to his colonial employers also made a deep impression on Dia. As a young man he attended the primary school of École Blanchot in Saint-Louis followed by the École Normale William Ponty, the most respected secondary school in French West Africa. In 1924 Dia visited Dakar for the first time and he was amazed ...


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 ...


Bahru Zewde

Ethiopian intellectual and reformer, was born in Adwa (northern Ethiopia) on 30 July 1886 Some three years later he lost his father at the battle Metemma between Ethiopia and Mahdist Sudan that claimed the life of Emperor Yohannes IV That fateful event created a political vacuum in northern Ethiopia into which the Italians who were hovering around the port of Massawa stepped with alacrity At the same time the emperor s core province Tegray fell into disarray At the tender age of seven Gebre Heywet joined the exodus of Tegrayans into the adjoining and relatively peaceful Italian colony of Eritrea He spent some years at the Swedish Mission in Menkullu on the mainland off the port of Massawa It was while visiting Massawa that he boarded one of the ships which took him to Austria where he was adopted by a family and acquired a medical degree as well ...


William Arthur Lewis was the first black person to receive the Nobel Prize in a category other than peace. He once described his intellectual career as consisting of three phases: the history of world economics and development, industrial economics, and the economic problems of underdeveloped nations. In his Nobel lecture, he suggested that the least developed countries should concentrate on increasing their regional trade rather than being heavily dependent on the continued growth of the most developed countries. He believed that in this way, underdeveloped nations could eventually accelerate their own economies even as growth in the more technologically advantaged nations slackened.

Lewis wanted to study engineering but decided it would be pointless since, at that time, neither the government nor white firms would hire a black engineer. A brilliant student, he received a bachelor of commerce degree with honors from Saint Mary's College in Saint Lucia (1929 ...


Robert Tignor

Distinguished public intellectual, one of the founding figures of the field of development economics, which came to prominence after the Second World War. For his pioneering work in this field, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1979.

1.Lifetime of achievements

2.Academic career

3.Lewis s theory ...


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 ...


Robbie Clark

Julianne Malveaux refers to herself as the “Mad Economist” because, she says, “you’ve got to be either angry or crazy…to interpret economic data and keep a level head. Some days I want to scream at the bifurcation and trifurcation in this country, the double standards and triple meanings, the way that the rich get richer, the poor, poorer and the rest of us more complacent.”

Recognized for her witty, insightful, and passionate commentary on economic and political issues, Malveaux is known as one of the nation’s most intellectually progressive economists, authors, lecturers, syndicated columnists, and civic leaders. Her voice demands attention as she argues some of America’s most complex social and economic issues with fierceness, conviction and humor. Cornel West described her as “the most provocative, progressive and iconoclastic public intellectual in the country.”

The oldest of five children, Malveaux was born in San Francisco, California, to Warren Malveaux ...


Malinda Williams

writer, journalist, economist, and commentator, was born in San Francisco, California, to Proteone Alexandria Malveaux, a social worker. She received an AB in 1974, an MA in 1975 in economics from Boston College, and a PhD in Economics in 1980 from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Malveaux served as a media intern for WFAA-TV in Dallas, Texas, in the summer of 1975 and as a junior staff economist for the White House Council of Economic Advisers in Washington, D.C., from 1977 to 1978. She was a research fellow for the Rockefeller Foundation in New York City from 1978 to 1980 and an assistant professor of economics at the New School for Social Research in New York from 1980 to 1981.Malveaux's first book, Black Women in the Labor Force, appeared in 1980, a collaborative project with Phyllis A. Wallace and Linda ...


Jeremy Rich

politician and economist, was born on 5 June 1964 in the city of Kundu in the eastern province of Maniema in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Little is available on his early life, though some sources claimed he came from a relatively poor family and he was recognized as a man of fervent Protestant faith. After graduating from primary and secondary school, Ponyo went to the University of Kinshasa. There he studied economics, in which subject he received his undergraduate degree in 1988 Ponyo then became a high ranking figure at the Banque Centrale of Congo where he coauthored with economist François Kabuya Kalala a study of financial policies in eastern and western Kasai provinces in the last years of dictator Mobutu Sese Seko The two authors noted how the Kasai provincial governments refused to follow Mobutu s policy of replacing old zaires the main currency ...


Gerhard Seibert

, economist, politician, and former prime minister of São Tomé e Príncipe, was born Maria das Neves Ceita Batista in São Tomé on 11 July 1958. She married Carlos Quaresma Batista de Sousa, with whom she has two daughters. Neves graduated in economics with a specialization in finance and crediting. Thereafter she became a civil servant in the ministry of finance and attended several training courses in macroeconomic management and banking. From 1999 to 2001 she was minister of economics, commerce, agriculture, fisheries, and tourism (a post that her husband had occupied in previous governments) in the government of Prime Minister Guilherme Posser da Costa (Movimento de Libertação de São Tomé e Príncipe/Partido Social Democrata; MLSTP/PSD). While minister of economy in March 1999 she was embarrassed by her husband who was dismissed from his post of governor of the Central Bank of São Tomé and Príncipe BCSTP due ...


Mickie Hudson-Koster

Kenyan economist, nationalist, and father of Barack Obama Jr., 44th president of the United States, was born in Kanyadhiang village near Lake Victoria on 4 April 1936 to Hussein Onyango Obama, medicine man, farmer, and colonial cook, and Habiba Akumu Nyanjango. Raised by his father’s third wife, Sarah Ogwel, Obama grew up in Nyangʿoma Kogelo village in the Siaya District of Nyanza Province. A serious student, Obama was one of eighty-one African students selected to study abroad under a program organized by Kenyan politician Tom Mboya to send leading students to the United States to prepare for impending independence. Another Kenyan student who participated in Mboya’s program was Africa’s first female Nobel Peace Prize winner, the environmentalist Wangari Muta Maathai. In 1959 Obama enrolled as an economics student at the University of Hawaii, becoming the first African student to study there.

Obama had several wives during his life Before he ...