This is Alpha Chapter

Profiles of who we are:

This is Alpha Chapter #13 - 10/18/11

Bro. William Stuart Nelson, Alpha 1916

(taken from the Echo of 1920, Howard University's Yearbook)


If Alpha Chapter had an MVP of the Century, Bro. Nelson would definitely be a candidate for consideration. As you can see, Togo was far from a slouch at Howard. He was a leader as we all should be as Omega Men serving as president of several organizations including Basileus of Alpha Chapter. But his undergrad career is only a preview of things to come. Bro. Nelson served in WWI and received his BA from Howard in 1920 and his Bachelor of Divinity from Yale in 1924. He also studied at the University of Paris from 1921 to 1922, the University of Berlin from 1922 to 1923, and the University of Marburg, Germany, in 1923 and from 1925 to 1926. He came back to serve in several capacities at Howard including teaching until 1931 when he was tapped to become the first black president of Shaw University and later the first black president of Dillard University. He returned to Howard in 1940 to become Dean of the School of Religion after Bro. Benjamin E. Mays left that position to become President of Morehouse. He was also Dean of the University and Vice President of Special Projects before retiring in 1967 (so most of the 60s Bruhs should know Bro. Nelson). Bro. Nelson authored several books and worked with Mahatma Gandhi (yeah, that Gandhi) while in India on a special mission for the American Friends Service Committee from 1946-1958. He is one of five Alpha Chapter Bruhs who have been celebrated by Howard with honorary degrees (can anyone name the other four?). Bro. Nelson was also Editor to the Oracle in 1919 (the position then was known as Director of Publicity).



While these accomplishment are significant, Bro. Nelson primary contribution that has a lasting impact on each and every African American is much more significant and profound. Stay tune for future issues as to his contribution.

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