Academic Historian

Otis D. Alexander, Library Director at Saint John Vianney College Seminary & Graduate School in Miami, Florida, has also directed academic and public libraries in the District of Columbia, Indiana, Texas, and Virginia. In addition, he has been a library manager in the Virgin Islands of the United States as well as in the Republic of Liberia. His research has appeared in Public Library Quarterly, Scribner’s Encyclopedia of American Lives, and Virginia Libraries journal. Alexander received the Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science degrees from the University of the District of Columbia and the Master of Library & Information Science degree from Ball State University. He earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree from International University and studied additionally at Harvard Graduate School of Education Leadership for Academic Librarians, Oberlin Conservatory of Music Voice Performance Pedagogy, and Atlanta University School of Library & Information Studies.

Alton Augustus Adams, Sr. (1889-1987)

Composer, conductor, and flutist Alton Augustus Adams, Sr., was born in Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, the Danish West Indies, on November 4, 1889, to Jacob Henry Adams, a carpenter, and Petrina Evangeline Dinzey, a seamstress. They were handcrafters and encouraged their children to be entrepreneurs. … Read MoreAlton Augustus Adams, Sr. (1889-1987)

Rosetta Atkins [Sister Rosetta] Tharpe (1915-1973)

Guitarist, pianist, arranger, singer, and lyricist Sister Rosetta Tharpe was born Rosetta Nubin on March 20, 1915, in Cotton Plant, Arkansas to Pentecostal Pastor Willis B. Atkins from Arkadelphia and Katie Bell Harper Nubin, a musician and pastor from Princeton, Arkansas. At three Tharpe’s mother … Read MoreRosetta Atkins [Sister Rosetta] Tharpe (1915-1973)

Thomas Dexter Jakes (1957- )

Bishop T.D. Jakes—megachurch pastor, best-selling author, playwright, and movie producer—was born Thomas Dexter Jakes on June 9, 1957, in South Charleston, West Virginia, to Ernest L. Jakes, Sr., owner of a janitorial service that had three offices and 52 employees, and Odith Patton Jakes, a … Read MoreThomas Dexter Jakes (1957- )