duke's first black graduate students
By Natalia Espinosa
In 1948, the Divinity School was the first to press for integration. However, leadership opposed admitting black students until 1961, when Ruben Lee Speakes and Walter Thaniel Johnson Jr. Enrolled in the Divinity School and David Robinson enrolled in the Law School. Johnson later became North Carolina’s first black assistant district attorney and played a key role in desegregating Greensboro schools. For his part, Speakes served as a board director on the Durham Committee on Negro Affairs during his studies as well as serving as chairman of the executive committee of the NAACP.
. Legacy, 1963-1993 (Durham: Duke University, Office of the University Vice President & Vice Provost, 1995), 22.