In Memoriam: Samuel L. Myers Sr., 1919-2021

Samuel Myers, the former president of Bowie State University in Maryland, died on January 8 at Collington Retirement Village in Mitchellville, Maryland. He was 101 years old.

A native of Baltimore, Myers graduated summa cum laude from Frederick Douglas High School in 1936. He earned a bachelor’s degree at what is now Morgan State University in 1940 and went on to obtain a master’s degree in economics from Boston University in 1942. After serving as an officer in the Pacific Theatre during World War II, he returned to the United States to receive a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University in 1949.

Dr. Myers served on the faculty at Morgan State from 1950 to 1963 before going to work for the U.S. State Department. He was appointed the fourth president of Bowie State University in 1968 and served in the post until 1977.

Dr. Myers was president emeritus of the National Association of Equal Opportunity in Higher Education, and founder and board chair of Minority Access, Inc., a nonprofit organization committed to improving diversity and reducing disparities in education, employment, research, and healthcare.

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  1. I am a graduate of the 1969 class of Bowie State University. Moreover, I am sad to read the passing of my former President of said University. It was under his direction that the students of Bowie stage a demonstration at the Maryland State Capital in Annapolis protesting unequal allocation of higher education funds to Black Colleges. We were arrested by the authority of the late Governor Agnew and it was the same day that Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated in April of 1968. Finally, I will be ever mindful of him since he wa influential in me receiving the NAFEO Award in 1985.

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