Diversity in academia conference to honor pioneering African-American scholar

Robert L. Williams II, professor emeritus, to keynote daylong event Sept. 12

“Foundations of Diversity at Washington University and Throughout Academia” will be the focus of a daylong conference Friday, Sept. 12, in honor of Robert L. Williams II, PhD, professor emeritus of psychology and of African and African-American studies at Washington University in St. Louis.

Free and open to the public, the conference runs from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. in Umrath Lounge, located in Karl Umrath Hall, just north of the Mallinckrodt Student Center, 6445 Forsyth Blvd.


A prominent, pioneering figure in the history of African-American psychology, Williams is well known as a stalwart critic of racial and cultural biases in IQ testing; for coining the word “Ebonics” in 1973; and for developing the Black Intelligence Test of Cultural Homogeneity.

He has published extensively, including several groundbreaking books that greatly enhance social science, education, law and racial equality. Williams was a founding member of the Association of Black Psychologists, and he served as its second president.

Williams will deliver the keynote address at 11:30 a.m. The conference also will include presentations by more than a dozen colleagues from Washington University and other institutions across the country. For a full list of speakers and an agenda, visit here.

The program is sponsored by the Office of the Provost; the dean of Arts & Sciences; the Black Alumni Council; programs in linguistics and in African and African-American Studies and the departments of psychology and education, all in Arts & Sciences.

For more information, contact Janary Stanton, African & African-American Studies, at jstanton@wustl.edu or 314-935-8556.