Jewel L. Prestage, a long-time faculty member at Southern University in Baton Rouge and the first African American women to receive a Ph.D. in political science from an American university, died on August 1 in Houston. She was 82 years old.
A native of Hutton, Louisiana, Prestage was a graduate of Southern University. She went on to earn a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in political science at the University of Iowa. She was 22 years old when she earned her doctorate.
Dr. Prestage joined the faculty at Southern University in 1956 and served for 33 years. She chaired the department of political science for 18 years and also served as dean of the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs.
After retiring from Southern University, Dr. Prestage joined the political science faculty at Prairie View A&M University in Texas. There, she served for eight years as dean of the Benjamin Banneker Honors College. She retired in 2002.