Famous Black Educators

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Booker T. Washington

Booker T. Washington.
4
Birthdate: April 5, 1856
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Westlake Corner, Virginia, United States
Died: November 14, 1915
Booker T. Washington was born into slavery but rose to be an advisor to many U.S. presidents and also became the director of the Tuskegee Institute. His Atlanta Compromise, initially accepted and later rejected by black leaders, urged the blacks to work for their freedom through education and not revolt.

 2 Anita Hill

Anita Hill.
19
Famous As: Attorney
Birthdate: July 30, 1956
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Morns, Oklahoma, USA

 3 Betty Shabazz

Betty Shabazz.
6
Famous As: Educator
Birthdate: May 28, 1934
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Pinehurst, Georgia, United States
Died: June 23, 1997

Civil rights activist and educator Betty Shabazz, or Betty X, was the wife of Black nationalist leader Malcolm X. Raised by her adoptive parents in Detroit, she met Malcolm X at a Nation of Islam event in Harlem. She died when her apartment was set on fire set by her grandson.

 4 Ta-Nehisi Coates

Ta-Nehisi Coates.
11
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: September 30, 1975
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Baltimore, Maryland, United States

Author and journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates gained international prominence while serving as the national correspondent at The Atlantic. His writings on socio-political issues related to African Americans and white supremacy garnered him much appreciation. He is a recipient of the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center Prize for Writing to Advance Social Justice. He also writes fiction and comics.

 5 Henry Louis Gates Jr.

Henry Louis Gates Jr..
6
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: September 16, 1950
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Keyser, West Virginia

Henry Louis Gates Jr. is an American literary critic, historian, professor, filmmaker, and public intellectual. He is currently serving as the director of the Hutchins Center at Harvard University. Over the years Gates has been honored with several prestigious awards including the National Humanities Medal. In 1997, he was named in Time magazine's 25 Most Influential Americans list.

 6 Ennis Cosby

Ennis Cosby
4
Famous As: Teacher
Birthdate: April 15, 1969
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
Died: January 16, 1997

The only son of comedian Bill Cosby, Ennis Cosby made headlines when he was shot dead at 27, in an attempted robbery on a deserted Southern California road. He was dyslexic and discussed his disability with the children he taught as a student-teacher at the Alfred E. Smith Elementary School.

 7 Wynton Marsalis

Wynton Marsalis
4
Famous As: Trumpeter
Birthdate: October 18, 1961
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
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 8 Myles Munroe

Myles Munroe
4
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: April 20, 1954
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Nassau, Bahamas
Died: November 9, 2014

 9 Carter Woodson

Carter Woodson.
4
Famous As: Historian
Birthdate: December 19, 1875
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New Canton, Virginia, United States
Died: April 3, 1950

Historian Carter Woodson was is remembered for pioneering Black studies in schools and colleges. He began the Negro History Week, which is now celebrated as the Black History Month. Poverty had pushed him to work in the coal mines initially, and he couldn’t join high school before 20.

 10 John McWhorter

John McWhorter
6
Famous As: Linguist
Birthdate: October 6, 1965
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Philadelphia

 11 T'Keyah Crystal Keymah

T'Keyah Crystal Keymah
4
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: October 13, 1962
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

 12 Max Roach

Max Roach
4
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: January 10, 1924
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Pasquotank County, North Carolina, U.S.
Died: August 16, 2007

 13 Stephen McKinley Henderson

Stephen McKinley Henderson
4
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: August 31, 1949
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kansas City, USA

 14 Ron Carter

Ron Carter
4
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: May 4, 1937
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ferndale, Michigan, U.S.

 15 Yusef Abdul Lateef

Yusef Abdul Lateef
4
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: October 9, 1920
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Chattanooga, Tennessee, United States
Died: December 23, 2013

 16 Mary Ann Shadd

Mary Ann Shadd
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Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: October 9, 1823
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Wilmington, Delaware, United States
Died: June 5, 1893

The first North American Black woman to publish a newspaper, USA-born Mary Ann Shadd was the founder of the Canadian newspaper, The Provincial Freeman. Concurrently serving as its anonymous editor and contributor, she also became one of the first women to pursue journalism in Canada. She was also one of the first Black women to earn a degree in law.

 17 W. C. Handy

W. C. Handy
6
Famous As: Composer
Birthdate: November 16, 1873
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Florence, Alabama, United States
Died: March 28, 1958

 18 Ron Dellums

Ron Dellums
4
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: November 24, 1935
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Oakland, California, U.S.
Died: July 30, 2018

 19 Babatunde Olatunji

Babatunde Olatunji
3
Famous As: Musician, Percussionist
Birthdate: April 7, 1927
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Ajido
Died: April 6, 2003

 20 Melvin Tolson

Melvin Tolson
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: February 6, 1898
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Moberly, Missouri, United States
Died: August 29, 1966

 21 Ellis Marsalis Jr.

Ellis Marsalis Jr.
3
Famous As: Pianist
Birthdate: November 14, 1934
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Died: April 1, 2020

 22 Maggie Lena Draper Walker

Maggie Lena Draper Walker
3
Famous As: Entrepreneur
Birthdate: July 15, 1864
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Richmond, Virginia, U.S.
Died: December 15, 1934

 23 Archie Shepp

Archie Shepp
3
Famous As: Jazz Saxophonist
Birthdate: May 24, 1937
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States

 24 Natasha Trethewey

Natasha Trethewey
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: April 26, 1966
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Gulfport, Mississippi, United States

 25 Jaramogi Oginga Odinga

Jaramogi Oginga Odinga
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: September 30, 1911
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bondo, Kenya
Died: January 20, 1994

 26 Eddie Robinson

Eddie Robinson
3
Famous As: Football coach
Birthdate: February 13, 1919
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Jackson, Louisiana
Died: April 3, 2007

 27 Barry Harris

Barry Harris
3
Famous As: Pianist
Birthdate: December 15, 1929
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Detroit, Michigan, United States

 28 Anthony Braxton

Anthony Braxton
3
Famous As: Composer
Birthdate: June 4, 1945
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States

 29 Edna Lewis

Edna Lewis
3
Famous As: Chef
Birthdate: April 13, 1916
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Freetown, Virginia, United States
Died: February 13, 2006

 30 Septima Poinsette Clark

Septima Poinsette Clark
3
Famous As: Educator
Birthdate: May 3, 1898
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Charleston, South Carolina
Died: December 15, 1987

 31 Theaster Gates

Theaster Gates
3
Famous As: Artist
Birthdate: August 28, 1973
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois

 32 E. R. Braithwaite

E. R. Braithwaite
3
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: June 27, 1912
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Georgetown, Guyana
Died: December 12, 2016

 33 Toni Cade Bambara

Toni Cade Bambara
3
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: March 25, 1939
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Harlem, New York, United States
Died: December 9, 1995

 34 Woody Shaw

Woody Shaw
3
Famous As: Trumpeter, Composer
Birthdate: December 24, 1944
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Laurinburg, North Carolina, United States
Died: May 10, 1989

 35 Sarah Onyango Obama

Sarah Onyango Obama
3
Famous As: Educator, Philanthropist
Birthdate: 1922 AD
Birthplace: Kenya
Died: March 29, 2021

 36 Derrick Bell

Derrick Bell
4
Famous As: Lawyer
Birthdate: November 6, 1930
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Pennsylvania, United States
Died: October 5, 2011

 37 Jackie McLean

Jackie McLean
3
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: May 17, 1931
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: New York City, New York, U.S.
Died: March 31, 2006

 38 Carole Simpson

Carole Simpson
3
Famous As: Broadcaster
Birthdate: December 7, 1941
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States

 39 John Edgar Wideman

John Edgar Wideman
3
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: June 14, 1941
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Washington, D.C., United States

 40 Autherine Lucy

Autherine Lucy
3
Famous As: Civil Rights Activist, Educator
Birthdate: October 5, 1929
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Shiloh, Alabama, United States

 41 Janet Collins

Janet Collins
3
Famous As: Ballet Dancer
Birthdate: March 7, 1917
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Died: May 28, 2003

 42 Lucy Kibaki

Lucy Kibaki
3
Famous As: First lady
Birthdate: January 13, 1936
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: MUKURWE-INI, Kenya
Died: April 26, 2016

 43 Marjorie Lee Browne

Marjorie Lee Browne.
3
Famous As: Mathematics Educator
Birthdate: September 9, 1914
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Memphis
Died: October 19, 1979

 44 Ola Rotimi

Ola Rotimi
3
Famous As: Playwright
Birthdate: April 13, 1938
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Ilesa, Nigeria
Died: August 18, 2000

 45 Richard Theodore Greener

Richard Theodore Greener
3
Famous As: Educator
Birthdate: January 30, 1844
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: May 2, 1922

 46 David Kato

David Kato
3
Famous As: Teacher
Birthdate: February 13, 1964
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Mukono, Uganda
Died: January 26, 2011

 47 June Jordan

June Jordan
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: July 9, 1936
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Harlem, New York, United States
Died: June 14, 2002

 48 Mulgrew Miller

Mulgrew Miller
3
Famous As: American musician
Birthdate: August 13, 1955
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Greenwood, Mississippi, United States
Died: May 29, 2013

 49 Wadada Leo Smith

Wadada Leo Smith
3
Famous As: Trumpeter
Birthdate: December 18, 1941
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Leland, Mississippi, United States

 50 Christopher Okigbo

Christopher Okigbo
3
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: August 16, 1932
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Ojoto, Nigeria
Died: 1967 AD