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Biography of Dr. Benjamin E. Mays

Benjamin E. MaysBenjamin Elijah Mays was born in 1894 to former slaves. Inspired by Frederick Douglas, Paul Laurence Dunbar, and Booker T. Washington, Mays became a Baptist minister, earned a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, served as Dean of the Howard University School of Religion, was an advisor to several United States presidents, served as a member and as President of the Atlanta Board of Education, and was President of Morehouse College for 27 years.

In his hundreds of writings, including articles, books, and pamphlets, Dr. Mays encouraged academic excellence and vigorously challenged segregation in schooling, housing, and employment. In addition to his own myriad of accomplishments, Dr. Benjamin E. Mays was an inspiration and advisor to his students, including Julian Bond, Andrew Young, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who referred to Dr. Mays as his "spiritual mentor."

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Find out what it means to be a mentor/protege in the Benjamin E. Mays Mentoring Program and how you can get involved.