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<Physicists>

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Lawson, James Raymond
Birth Year : 1915
Death Year : 1996
Born in Louisville, KY, James R. Lawson was the first student to receive a degree in physics from Fisk University. He developed a research program in infrared spectroscopy, which was the beginning of the Fisk Infrared Research Laboratory. Lawson served as president of Fisk from 1967 to 1977 and later became director of the Office of University Affairs, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, in Washington D.C. For more see N. Fuson, "Brief History of The Physics Department at Fisk University Including Its Infrared Spectroscopy And Other Research Programs", an article from the Tennessee Tribune, 02/18/97; and The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan.

See photo with James R. Lawson on p.66 in Ebony, April 1974.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Physicists, Researchers, Migration South
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / Nashville, Tennessee

Neal, Homer Alfred, Sr.
Birth Year : 1942
Homer Alfred Neal, Sr. was born in Frankfort, KY. He is a graduate of Indiana University and a two time graduate of the University of Michigan, earning his Ph.D. in physics in 1966. He was the 2003 recipient of the the Edward A. Bouchet Award for his contributions to experimental high energy physics. Neal is a professor at the University of Michigan and has served as chair of the Physics Department and as Interim President of the University. He has also served on a number of other organization boards. A joint resolution appointed Neal a Citizen Regent on the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institute. In 2007, it was announced that Michigan University physicists, including Homer Neal, had made a significant contribution toward the discovery of a new particle, Cascade b (Xi-b) baryon. For more see T. Davis, "Physics: U-M physicists contribute to new particle discovery," Ann Arbor News, 07/02/2007, p. C1; and Who's Who Among African Americans, 1977-2006.

See photo image of Homer Alfred Neal, Sr., about mid-way down the webpage of the NMAAHC.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Migration North, Physicists, Researchers
Geographic Region: Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky / Flint, Michigan

Robinson, William Henry
Birth Year : 1900
Death Year : 1962
Born in Louisville, KY, William H. Robinson was head of the Physics and Math Department at Tillotson College [now Houston-Tillotson University] and Bricks Junior College, in North Carolina, and assistant director of the Mechanical Arts Department at Prairie View College [now Prairie View A&M University] before becoming head of the Physics and Math Department at North Carolina College [now North Carolina Central University], beginning in 1938. Robinson received his Ph.D. in 1937. He was author of several articles, including "The Negro and the Field of Physics," Beta Kappa Chi Bulletin (1945). William H. Robinson died in Durham, NC, on March 27, 1962, he was the son of Amanda Obannon Robinson and Lee Robinson [source: North Carolina Death Certificate]. He was the husband of Fannie Robinson. William H. Robinson's funeral arrangements were handled by A. D. Porter and Sons in Louisville, KY, and he was buried in Eastern Cemetery. For more see Who's Who in Colored America, 1950.
Subjects: Education and Educators, Migration West, Physicists, Migration East, Mechanics and Mechanical Engineering
Geographic Region: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky / North Carolina / Texas

 

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