It was expanded five years ago on the strength of a W.K. Kellogg Foundation grant which provides for student leadership retreats and larger numbers of Patricia Roberts Harris Public Affairs Fellows, as the selectees have become known. Fellows are exposed to career development opportunities in international as well as domestic affairs, a point recently underscored by combining the Harris Public Affairs Program with activities of the Ralph J. Bunche International Affairs Center, where the program is now housed. Ambassador Horace G. Dawson, Jr., who assumed leadership of the program in 1990, is Harris Program and Center director. Ambassador O. Rudolph Aggrey, now retired from the University, was the first program director.

     Another major component of the Harris legacy was the donation of her papers, artifacts and other memorabilia to the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center. The papers, acquired in 1988, span from the 1950s to 1985, and document primarily Mrs. Harris’s career as Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development and Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. A smaller amount of material relates to her tenure as Ambassador to Luxembourg, her work as a member of the 1972 Credentials Committee for the Democratic National Convention, other organizational affiliations, and her D.C. mayoral campaign.

     The chronological and alphabetical correspondence files from the 1970s; official photos and clippings in binders; committee reports; printed material; travel souvenirs; diplomas, award certificates and plaques; and videotapes which comprise the collection represent a wealth of information documenting Patricia Roberts Harris’s efforts to effect change in the government agencies under her control and they provide insight into her management style and the manner in which she grappled with budgeting problems, housing costs, energy legislation, and the difficulties of developing a national urban policy.

     For more information on the papers of Patricia Roberts Harris at the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center, contact Joellen ElBashir, Curator at (202) 806-7480 or E-mail her at .


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May 2000