Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Rosenwald (Act II)

Richard Day reported today on work to restore Rosenwald schools, and I can't resist chiming in.

The work of the Rosenwald Fund has a profound Kentucky connection. Edwin Embree, the Fund's 20-year president, spent most of his childhood in Berea, Kentucky, and saw his work as a continuation of the values he learned from his grandfather, John G. Fee.

For years after the great school-building investment, Embree made the Fund "the most active foundation in the United States fighting racial discrimination. " For example, Rosenwald fellowships provided crucial early support to the careers of Marion Anderson, Ralph Bunche, Charles Drew, and Ralph Ellison.

In 2006, Berea College's alumni magazine ran an article on Embree's work and the Fee connection authored by a now-retired Berea professor Alfred Perkins. It's available for download here. I recommend it heartily, with the small disclaimer that I've been hearing about the Embree work for years from Dr. Perkins, also known as my dad.

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Updates and data on Kentucky education!