In Memoriam: Orlando L. Taylor, 1936-2024

Orlando L. Taylor, distinguished senior advisor to the president of Fielding Graduate University in California, passed away on January 16, 2024 at the age of 87.

Dr. Taylor was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, on August 9, 1936. He earned his bachelor’s degree in education from Hampton University, a historically Black institution in Virginia. He then went on to receive his master’s degree from Indiana University, followed by his Ph.D. in education from the University of Michigan. Throughout his career, Dr. Taylor received seven honorary doctoral degrees from Purdue University in Indiana, Indiana University, the Ohio State University, Hope College in Michigan, DePauw University in Indiana, Denison University in Ohio, and Southern Connecticut State University.

Before he stepped into his senior advisor role, Dr. Taylor served as the vice president for strategic initiatives and research at Fielding University. Earlier in his career, he served as president of the District of Columbia campus for the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. He also held multiple senior leadership positions at historically Black Howard University.

In addition to his administrative career, Dr. Taylor had experience as a speech-language clinician and conducted research on diversity and inclusion in higher education, focusing his work on advancing women and people of color in the STEM fields into leadership positions at historically Black colleges and universities. He was the author or editor of several books including Higher Education In a Changing World (Fielding University Press, 2023). Dr. Taylor was the first Black president of the National Communication Association. He also held leadership positions for the American Speech and Hearing Association and the National Black Speech, Language, and Hearing Association.


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