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In the News - David Blackwell Dies

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David Blackwell, renowned statistician and mathematician, dies at the age of 91.

 

Read on for more on this brilliant man's accomplishments....

 

David Blackwell was the first African-American accepted into the National Academy of Sciences. He was also the first black tenured professor at the University of California, Berkeley. He is most recognized for his work in game theory and probability.

 

David Blackwell attended the University of Illinois and earned his Ph.D in mathematics at 22. Afterwards, Blackwell was given a one-year appointment as a Rosenwald Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton. This caused an uproar because there were no black students enrolled at Princeton during that time. The president of Princeton University wrote a letter protesting Blackwell's admission, but the Institute upheld it's decision.

 

His first teaching job was at Southern University before he later transitioned to Clark College in Atlanta (now Clark Atlanta University). In 1944, he joined Howard University and served as the head of the mathematics department until 1954. In the same year he accepted professorship at the University of California, Berkley. By 1956, he was appointed chairperson of the statistics department. He retired as professor emeritus in 1989.

 

Blackwell is the recipient of numerous awards including the R.A. Fisher Award from the Committee of Presidents of Statistical Societies. He also holds honorary degrees from 12 universities, including Carnegie-Mellon, Yale, and Harvard. Blackwell was a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. 

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Anonymous's picture

Thanks for posting this! May

Thanks for posting this! May his soul R.I.P.
Natia's picture

To be Young Black and

To be Young Black and Fabulous you also need to be educated and well rounded and appreciate what a great forefather like this man has done. He was accepted into school and the President of the school didn't want him there simply because he was black--he didn't know or try to know anything else about him except that he was black. Yet so many young black people are falling behind or are not interested in this important history maker among many others. Every day you live as a black person you are making black history--what do you want that history to look like? School is so much more accessible yet the majority still don't go and the system AND the people are failing themselves. They're more interested in how much of a home wrecker they THINK Alicia Keys is instead of trying to do great things like this man. Yes we all love entertainment but at the same time I'll be the first to admit we love the wrong things and ignore what will further our position in society and as people. Priorities are screwed up. Keep judging and not educating--we'll soon see how far it REALLY takes us. RIP Sir, you deserve it after 91 years of breaking down barriers. Wish more of us including myself would be more courageous and go further in these times. Just makes me want to reevaluate what's important.
Electric Sunshine "I'm in Bermuda Bitch"'s picture

I too wish I could have been

I too wish I could have been taught Math by Dr. Blackwell. I probably would be much better at it, and possibly enjoy it. RIP Dr. Blackwell!!!
Anonymous's picture

RIP. I wish I could have

RIP. I wish I could have learned something from him. I can't stand math.
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WOW!! What an incredible man!

WOW!! What an incredible man! May he rest in peace!
MW09's picture

Wow!! This man accomplished

Wow!! This man accomplished great things in his life! What a great story to read! Excellence at its best!
carmelhoney's picture

Thanks for posting that. We

Thanks for posting that. We need to see more positive stories about what AA accomplished. R.I.P Dr. Blackwell.....
Anonymous's picture

What an accomplished and

What an accomplished and highly intelligent man. Rest in perfect peace Mr.Blackwell you made your mark, so proud to read this, he is truly an inspiration.
RIP Mr.Blackwell's picture

What an accomplished and

What an accomplished and highly intelligent man. Rest in perfect peace Mr.Blackwell you made your mark, so proud to read this, he is truly an inspiration.
RIP Mr.Blackwell's picture

What an accomplished and

What an accomplished and highly intelligent man. Rest in perfect peace Mr.Blackwell you made your mark, so proud to read this, he is truly an inspiration.
RIP Mr.Blackwell's picture

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I thought this post was about

I thought this post was about an intelligent black man named Dr. Blackwell.
Edonis126's picture

Wow, what a story. I find it

Wow, what a story. I find it quite unfortunate that many of us, myself included learn of him after his death. RIP.
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okesut's picture

It's too bad that I am now

It's too bad that I am now just hearing about this man, but may his soul RIP.
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Anonymous's picture

plzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz HOLD UP!

plzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz HOLD UP! LET ME CORRECT YALL & NATASIA it's ....(DR. DAVID BALDWELL) He did earn that title...So address him in a fashionable manor. PH.D at age 22.. I dont know why folks do that.. Same thing with our President..He is PRESIDENT OBAMA.. not OBAMA. he earned that title.. and not many get it.
Anonymous's picture

Well, I can certainly tell

Well, I can certainly tell that you went to Southern. The post states, "His first teaching job was at Southern University..." Reading is fundamental!! Well, I can certainly tell that you went to Southern. The post states, "His first teaching job was at Southern University..." Reading is fundamental!!
Anonymous's picture

What an amazing talent str8

What an amazing talent str8 from God. God bless his family
wow's picture

Dr. Blackwell died on July

Dr. Blackwell died on July 8th. Today is the 19th. Tasha, how about less garbage, which you always seem to post within 24 hours of it happening, and more positivity for our young, black and fabulous youth that frequent this black hole of a website. Tighten up!! Go Bears!! C/O 1993
Better late than never, I guess...'s picture

A PHD at 22 wow what a genius

A PHD at 22 wow what a genius rip mr Blackwall and what's with all the comments saying black people can be smart too i don't know who's been brainwashing you but colour has nothing to do with it anybody can be a genius as long as they're eprepared to put the work and effort into it
Anonymous's picture

Sad that this is my first

Sad that this is my first time hearing of him. Very accomplished man. May he RIP
Coldplayer's picture

Wow he accomplished a lot.

Wow he accomplished a lot. Great post. R.I.P David Blackwell.<< A genius indeed.
Brina's picture

R.I.P you were a brilliant

R.I.P you were a brilliant man and a credit to us all
Yardy's picture

RIP Mr. Blackwell and GO

RIP Mr. Blackwell and GO BEARS (UC Berkeley).... especially the black ones doing big thangs!
GoldenBear2010's picture

Wow he accomplished a lot.

Wow he accomplished a lot. Great post. R.I.P David Blackwell.
Brina's picture

It was good to see a post

It was good to see a post about Dr. Blackwell's accomplishments.
lea's picture

I really appreciate this

I really appreciate this post. Thank you.
Old Skool 's picture

Illini's finest! RIP Dr.

Illini's finest! RIP Dr. Blackwell
kec's picture

Illini's finest! RIP!

Illini's finest! RIP!
kec's picture

What admirable

What admirable accomplishments! Very inspiring life. Rest peacefully...
BlackVesper's picture

what a great man! may he rest

what a great man! may he rest in perfect peace
Anonymous's picture

what a great man! may he rest

what a great man! may he rest in perfect peace
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Anonymous's picture

Wow, those are some amazing

Wow, those are some amazing accomplishments -- especially a Ph.D. at 22!!
n_satiable's picture

Tasha thanks for posting

Tasha thanks for posting this!! U should do more post regarding positive African Americans just as a bonus. Had yhou not posted this I would not have known that such an accomplished professor graduated from my Alma Mater SOuthern University. RIP Dr. Blackwell.
krysroc's picture

I agree. As much as I try to

I agree. As much as I try to keep up with our academic heroes...it is hard to keep track of all of them.
Bronze duchess's picture

Well, I can certainly tell

Well, I can certainly tell that you went to Southern. The post states, "His first teaching job was at Southern University..." Reading is fundamental!!!
Anonymous's picture

Well, I can certainly tell

Well, I can certainly tell that you went to Southern. The post states, "His first teaching job was at Southern University..." Reading is fundamental!!
Anonymous's picture

I can tell you went to

I can tell you went to Southern. The post states, "His first teaching job was at Southern University..." *R.I.F*
Anonymous's picture

Impressive, incredibly so.

Impressive, incredibly so.
Anonymous's picture

What an extraordinary career.

What an extraordinary career. An example of a brilliant man who excelled in his career in the face of extreme racism; yet still, he rose.
Bronze duchess's picture

RIP

RIP
Tampa_chick's picture

RIP Dr. Blackwell

RIP Dr. Blackwell
Anonymous's picture

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