12 Black Pioneers Whose Contributions Undoubtedly Changed Education in America


Armand Lanusse (c. 1810-1867)

Lanusse was a poet and educator living in New Orleans.  In 1845, he edited 85 poems written in French by 18 Afro-Creole poets of Louisiana called Les Cenelles. Lanusse helped fight for the rights of Black people in the bayou. In 1852, he organized a school for Afro-Creoles in New Orleans.


Daniel Payne (Feb. 24, 1811 – Nov. 2, 1893)

Payne was a pastor of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. He worked on helping freedman after slavery and recruiting more members into the congregation. He was also one of the founders of Wilberforce University in 1856. Payne also served as president of the school in 1863-77.

10 Brilliant Black Mathematicians Who Never Received the Praise They Deserved


Euphemia Haynes (Sept. 11, 1890 – July 25, 1980)

Haynes  was a mathematician and educator and the first African-American woman to earn a doctorate in mathematics from the Catholic University of America in 1943. For roughly 47 years, Haynes was a devoted math teacher in Washington, D.C. She taught at local high schools and at universities. In 1930, she taught at Miner Teachers College. While there, she served as chair of the mathematics department and the Division of Mathematics and Business Education. In 1966, Haynes was the first woman to chair the District of Columbia School Board, and during her short period there, she was vital in the integration of the D.C. public schools. 



Gloria Conyers Hewitt (born Oct. 26, 1935)

Hewitt earned her bachelor’s in secondary mathematics education at Fisk University in 1956. She attended the University of Washington and received her master’s and doctorate in mathematics in 1962. One of her major career highlights was in the 1990s, when she served as chair of the mathematics department at the University of Montana. Hewitt was also one of the first Black women to be awarded a mathematics reward of any kind. She was awarded the National Science Foundation postdoctoral Science Faculty Fellowship in the 1990s.