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Showing posts from July, 2017

Jeh Johnson, April Ryan, & Deep Roots of Diversity at Paul, Weiss Law Firm

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I was filled with pride when President Barack Obama appointed Jeh Charles Johnson to become our nation’s Secretary of Homeland Security. Jeh Johnson’s grandfather had served as the first African-American president of Fisk University, where my parents were on the faculty. In fact, it was Dr. Charles S. Johnson who gave my parents their wedding at the Fisk Memorial Chapel, since my mother’s father had died when she was a young girl. Dr. Johnson had indeed become a father-figure to her during her early career.


Jeh and I would see each other as children on campus whenever our parents would socialize. Of course we went our separate ways when we left Nashville to go to college, but we would run into each other again over the years when we returned to visit. When Jeh returned to Fisk in 2013 to receive an honorary doctorate, we touched base again and caught up on each other’s recent activities. His parents came to witness the occasion, and my 92-year-old father was present as usual to direct …

How State and Local Governments Impoverish African-American Neighborhoods

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by Nina Kennedy
This article was written to recount my first-hand experience with the heartbreak of American racism. Soon after my father’s death I learned that I was the owner of a house in Charleston, West Virginia, which had been built by my grandfather, Dr. Henry Floyd Gamble, who was one of the first African-American graduates of the Yale Medical School. He set up a practice in Charleston as the first African-American surgeon, obstetrician, and gynecologist in the region, and founded the local chapter of the National Medical Association – the African-American version of the American Medical Association since the AMA did not accept African-Americans as members. He resided in the home he built with my grandmother and his four offspring, two of whom were adults by the time he and my grandmother married. When he died, he bequeathed the property to three of his children: my aunt Katherine, my uncle Howard, and my mother. Upon my mother’s death, her portion of the property went to my fa…