From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Letton, James Carey

(born: 1933  -  died: 2013) 

Born in Paris, KY, James C. Letton, a retired chemist, was a 1955 graduate of Kentucky State University who served as president of the Alumni Association from 1979-1984. He earned his Ph. D. from the University of Illinois in 1970 and returned to Kentucky State University to chair the Chemistry Department.

After five years on the Kentucky State faculty, Letton was hired at Proctor & Gamble Company in Cincinnati OH, as an organic chemist. Letton has a number of patents and was featured in Black Enterprise in 1990 when he was working on the fat substitute, Olestra. His research and publications have been in the areas of medicinal chemistry.

Letton has received a number of awards, including being named the recipient of the 1989 Percy L. Julian Award "for significant contributions in pure and/or applied research in science or engineering." That same year he was awarded the distinguished alumni citation from the National Association for Equal Opportunities in Education.

For more see Who's Who in the South and Southwest, 1975-1977; "Changing America's Diet," Black Enterprise, vol. 20, issue 7 (Feb. 1990), p. 106; and James Carey Letton in American Men & Women of Science, 1971-2007. 

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Bourbon County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Paris, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Outside Kentucky Place Name


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: Black enterprise (periodical)
NKAA Source: Who's who in the South and Southwest (annual)
NKAA Source: Black enterprise (periodical)
NKAA Source: American men & women of science (biennial)

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Letton, James Carey,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed July 28, 2021,

Last modified: 2021-02-08 17:56:44