Scholar, author, po­lit­i­cal an­a­lyst

Los Angeles Times - - Obituaries -

Ron­ald W. Wal­ters, 72, a long­time po­lit­i­cal an­a­lyst and scholar at Howard Uni­ver­sity and the Uni­ver­sity of Mary­land who was a lead­ing ex­pert on race and pol­i­tics, died Sept. 10 at a hos­pi­tal in Bethesda, Md.

He had been suf­fer­ing from lung can­cer.

Wal­ters spent 25 years at Howard be­fore be­com­ing di­rec­tor of the African Amer­i­can Lead­er­ship In­sti­tute at the Uni­ver­sity of Mary­land. He wrote nu­mer­ous books and more than 100 ar­ti­cles.

In 1984, Wal­ters served as a deputy cam­paign man­ager for the Rev. Jesse Jack­son’s bid for the Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial nom­i­na­tion. He con­sulted on Jack­son’s sec­ond pres­i­den­tial cam­paign in 1988 and ad­vised mem­bers of Congress over the years.

Wal­ters was born July 20, 1938, in Wi­chita, Kan., and was an early par­tic­i­pant in the civil rights move­ment. He was a mem­ber of a lo­cal NAACP youth group in 1958 when he helped lead a sit-in at a drug­store counter, two years be­fore a fa­mous protest at a Wool­worth’s in Greens­boro, N.C.

“There was a stu­dent net­work across the coun­try,” Wal­ters told the Kansas City Star in 1991.

“In Greens­boro they’d heard what hap­pened in Wi­chita, and I’m sure it in­spired them.”

He earned a bach­e­lor’s de­gree in his­tory and govern­ment in 1963 from Fisk Uni­ver­sity in Nashville, a mas­ter’s in 1966 in African stud­ies and a doc­tor­ate in 1971 in in­ter­na­tional re­la­tions from Amer­i­can Uni­ver­sity in Washington.


Kath­leen Fet­zer

Ron­ald W. Wal­ters worked at Howard Uni­ver­sity for 25 years.

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