Vanessa Pitts

Student Historian

Vanessa Pitts is an undergraduate student at the University of Washington, Seattle pursuing a bachelor of science in microbiology. After graduation she hopes to be accepted into medical school and become a physician of internal medicine. She is interested in preventing and treating chronic diseases in inner city populations.

Shonda Rhimes (1970- )

Shonda Rhimes is the first African American woman to write and produce a top-10-rated show on network television. She is most known for her work writing and producing the shows Grey’s Anatomy (2005-    ), Private Practice (2007-    ), and Scandal (2012-    ). Rhimes was born … Read MoreShonda Rhimes (1970- )

Zelda “Jackie” Ormes (1911-1985)

Image Ownership: Public Domain Jackie Ormes is widely considered the first African American cartoonist in the United States. She created four comic strips, Torchy Brown in Dixie to Harlem (1937), Candy (1945), Patty Jo ‘n’ Ginger (1946), and Torchy Brown, Heartbeats (1950). Ormes was born … Read MoreZelda “Jackie” Ormes (1911-1985)

Charles Rolland III (1951-2012)

Image Ownership: Public Domain Charles Rolland was the first African American chair of a major political party in Washington State. Roland served as chair of the Washington State Democratic Party during the years 1993-1995. He won his campaign through the labor-intensive task of personally driving … Read MoreCharles Rolland III (1951-2012)

Norris McDonald (1958- )

Image Courtesy of The African American Environmentalist Association Norris McDonald, a leading black environmentalist, is the founder and president of the African American Environmental Association (AAEA), an organization dedicated to protecting the environment, enhancing human, animal and plant ecologies, and increasing African American participation in … Read MoreNorris McDonald (1958- )

Martha Euphemia Lofton Haynes (1890-1980)

Image Ownership: Public Domain Martha Euphemia Lofton Haynes was the first African American woman to earn a Ph.D. in mathematics. Her dissertation, Determination of Sets of Independent Conditions Characterizing Certain Special Cases of Symmetric Correspondence was advised by Aubrey Landry, a professor at Catholic University … Read MoreMartha Euphemia Lofton Haynes (1890-1980)