by Alexa Schwerha
Howard University announced on Wednesday that former Democratic Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams will join the faculty as the first Ronald W. Walters Endowed Chair for Race and Black Politics.
Abrams will join the faculty in September for a multiyear appointment, The Washington Post reported. She will “foster interdisciplinary collaborations across the University on critical issues of race and Black politics, especially those issues that affect Americans of the African diaspora,” “inspire research” about “societal problems that adversely affect African diasporic communities and other vulnerable populations” and lead a speaker series, according to the university announcement.
“We are at an inflection point for American and international democracy, and I look forward to engaging Howard University’s extraordinary students in a conversation about where they can influence, shape and direct the critical public policy decisions we face,” Abrams said in the announcement. “From my alma mater, Spelman College, I have carved out a career that allows me to weave together policy analysis, political leadership, social justice, business, environmental, entertainment, and more. Through this post, I hope to emulate Dr. Walter’s diasporic lens on our world and be a part of how Howard University continues to contribute to the broader political discourse.”
Abrams served in the Georgia House of Representatives between 2007 and 2017, then ran and lost twice to Republican Gov. Brian Kemp in the 2018 and 2022 gubernatorial elections. She maintained after the 2018 election that she had won, but “just didn’t get to have the job.”
The endowed chair position was announced in 2020 after Walters’ wife gave the university an art collection valued at more than $2.5 million, the the announcement reads.
“Stacey Abrams has proven herself an essential voice and eager participant in protecting American democracy – not just for certain populations, but for everyone with the fundamental right to make their voices heard,” Howard University President Wayne A. I. Frederick said in the announcement. “As the inaugural Ronald W. Walters Endowed Chair, Ms. Abrams’ selection not only honors the work and legacy of renowned political strategist and scholar Dr. Ronald Walters, it expands on that legacy by bringing Howard students in dialogue with a contemporary candidate whose work has directly influenced today’s political landscape.”
Abrams had a brief stint as an adjunct professor at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, the Post reported. She earned her master’s degree in public affairs from the University of Texas at Austin and attended Yale Law School.
“Washington, D.C. is an essential part of how we protect democracy, how we think about social policy, how we challenge norms,” Abrams told the Post. “And Howard University is a crucible for how we can engage all of those pieces. And so when they approached me, I was excited.”
Howard University did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment. Abrams could not be reached for comment.
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Alexa Schwerha is a reporter at Daily Caller News Foundation.
Photo “Stacey Abrams” by Stacey Abrams.