Where Black Leaders Are Showing the Way

By , Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

BRASH. Unorthodox. Eager to serve. Many rising black leaders embrace these qualities. Cecil Williams is pastor of Glide Memorial Methodist Church in downtown San Francisco. Its 2,500 members and 3,000 volunteers serve the homeless, drugs addicts and alcoholics, former prisoners, and the unwanted. The church serves 3,000 free meals a day.

Reginald Lewis is chairman of the TRLC Group and TLC Beatrice International, which ranked No. 1 in the Black Enterprise magazine's 100 top black businesses for 1988. In January he donated $2 million to organizations ranging from Harlem dance groups to well-known universities.

New leaders are surfacing in: Religion

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Calvin Butts, pastor of the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, is restoring his church to activity in politics, housing, social services.

Benjamin Chavis Jr. is executive director of the United Church of Christ Commission for Racial Justice, in New York City.

Pastors William Gray III of Philadelphia and Floyd Flake of Queens, N.Y., are both members of Congress.

Barbara Harris of Boston, first female bishop in the Episcopal Church, heads the growing ranks of female ministers. Education

Richard Green, chancellor of New York City public schools, and Laval Wilson, superintendent of Boston schools, top the list of black educators who have sought to reform big-city school systems in recent years.

In higher education are such people as Franklin Jennifer, chancellor of higher education in Massachusetts; Caroline Lattimore, academic dean at Duke University; Eileen Tate Cline, dean of the Peabody School of Music of Johns Hopkins University; Ronald Crutcher, cellist, professor, and academic dean at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, and his wife, Betty Neal Crutcher, assistant to the president at Guilford College; Iris Mack, mathematics specialist in research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Sloan School of Management; Sara Lawrence Lightfoot, a professor at Harvard's Graduate School of Education and winner of a MacArthur Fellowship.

Black leaders in other fields include: Bill White, president of professional baseball's National League; Gloria Hillman, executive director of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation; Elaine Jones, vice-president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund; Claire Freeman, a deputy assistant secretary of defense; Marcia Ann Gillespie, executive editor of Ms. magazine; Rita Dove, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and college professor; and many more.

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