Reatha Clark King

Award of Distinction Recipient

Humphrey School of Public Affairs, November 15, 2011

Reatha Clark King, born into poverty in the south in 1938, transcended significant barriers to becoming one of the nation's first African-American women to receive a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Chicago. She also has a master of business administration from Columbia University. Her early work in thermo chemistry aided NASA's space program. Her many public accomplishments include serving as president of Metropolitan State University where she had a significant impact and as president and executive director of the General Mills Foundation, where she oversaw its philanthropy and citizen programs. She served on numerous boards of several Fortune 500 Companies where she provided leadership in ethics and business. She has served on the board of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and as a trustee of Clark Atlanta University. She is a life trustee of the University of Chicago and the recipient of 14 honorary degrees in addition to many other awards. She was one of the Humphrey School's Hill Fellows in 2004 and continues to participate in the School's Leadership and Management area and on the Humphrey School of Public Affairs Advisory Council.

Biographies are as-of time of award presentation.