University of Rochester

Charles Augustus Thompson

A member of the class of 1891, Charles Augustus Thompson was the first African American to graduate from the University of Rochester. After graduation, Thompson went on to study theology at a seminary in Memphis, Tennessee. He was subsequently a principle at a Memphis school, a clerk in government service, and a student at Howard Medical College. Before his death in 1935 Thompson served as a pastor at Fairmont Heights Presbyterian Church, and worked as a chiropractor in Washington, D.C.

For more information, please contact:

Douglas Flowe

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The Charles Augustus Thompson Lecture Series:
Leadership and Diversity in Action

The Charles Augustus Thompson Lecture Series: Leadership and Diversity in Action consists of a twice per semester series of talks by scholars who are contributing to current literature on diversity broadly stated, with particular reference to issues of race, ethnicity, gender, and identity. It is hosted by the Kearns Center for Leadership and Diversity in Arts, Sciences, and Engineering.

"Using Your History as a Stepping Stone for Your Destiny."

A Lecture by Kaye Whitehead, Ph.D.
January 31, 2014
4:00 p.m.
Hawkins-Carlson Room
Rush Rhees Library

RSVP By January 20, 2014


Dr. Karsonya (Kaye) Wise Whitehead

Tammy WaltonDr. Karsonya (Kaye) Wise Whitehead is Assistant Professor of Communication and an Affiliate Assistant Professor in African and African American History at Loyola University Maryland; a Master Teacher in African American History; an award-winning curriculum writer and lesson plan developer; an award-winning former Baltimore City middle school teacher; and, a three-time New York Emmy-nominated documentary filmmaker. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, her MA from the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, and her BA from Lincoln University, PA. In February 2013, Whitehead was one of four experts selected nationwide to present at President Obama’s first White House and Black History Month Panel and was one of several feminist scholars selected to present at the 100th Anniversary Harriet Tubman Symposium at the University of Albany. She is one of the featured speakers at the upcoming March on Washington Youth Mentoring Summit at the U.S. Capital. She has received various fellowships and grants to support her work including a 2012 Gilder Lehrman Fellowship in American History and a 2010 NEH Summer Stipend.

She was recently selected as one of the top 25 women professors in Maryland by Online Schools Maryland; and she received the 2013 recipient of Loyola University Maryland’s Faculty Award for Excellence in Engaged Scholarship. Whitehead has also received the 2006 Gilder Lehrman Preserve America Maryland History Teacher of the Year Award (sponsored by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and the Maryland State Department of Education); was one of fifty alumni to receive the Distinguished Black Alumni Award from the University of Notre Dame, Indiana (2005); and, was a winner of both the Langston Hughes, David Diop, Etheridge Knight Poetry Award (1999, 2000) and the Zora Neale Hurston Creative Writing Award (1998) from the Gwendolyn Brooks Creative Writing Center at the University of Chicago.

Dr. Whitehead has trained over 2500 K-12 teachers throughout the country in how to become culturally responsive teachers in diverse environments. She wrote and helped to create Cr. Camille Cosby and Renee Poussaint’s Civil Rights Movement website With All Deliberate Speed, their upcoming March on Washington Curriculum Package, and has written lesson plans for schools, museums, and cultural centers; and state and local history curriculums. Dr. Whitehead is the author of several book chapters, articles, and two forthcoming books, Notes from a Colored Girl: The Civil War Pocket Diaries of Emilie Frances Davis (University of South Carolina Press, 2014) and The Emancipation Proclamation: Race Relations on the Eve of Reconstruction (Routledge, 2014). Her website is