July 17

December 29, 1907 – July 17, 1997  Robert Weaver

Robert C. Weaver official portrait

Robert C. Weaver

The first African American United States Cabinet Member, Robert Clifton Weaver died on July 17, 1997 in Manhattan, New York at age 89.  Weaver served as the first Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) under the administration of President Lyndon B. Johnson from 1966 to 1968.  In 1969 Weaver accepted a post as president of Baruch College.  One year later he left for Hunter College where he was a professor of Urban Affairs until 1978.  Weaver also served as Chairman of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) from 1960-1961,  Weaver was born on December 29, 1907 in Washington, DC to Mortimer Grover Freeman and Florence Freeman.  He was the grandson Robert Tanner Freeman, ( the son of slaves and) the first African American to graduate in Dentistry from Harvard University in 1869.  Weaver was a holder of three degrees himself from Harvard, a B.S., M.A. and Ph.D.   He was married to former Ella V. Haith.  Their son Robert Jr., preceded them in death in 1962.

Robert C. Weaver 1966

Swearing in of Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Robert C. Weaver in the Fish Room of the White House, 1966. President Lyndon Johnson at right.