Ex-MSU President Wharton writes about his life of privilege amid prejudice

Oct 29, 2015

Current State talks with Dr. Clifton R. Wharton Jr. about his new book "Privilege and Prejudice" ahead of his World View Lecture Series at the Wharton Center on November 2.

From 1970 to 1978, Clifton R. Wharton Jr. served as President of Michigan State University. Wharton’s arrival in East Lansing made him the first African-American president of a major U.S. university, but it was only one memorable stop amid an eventful career of firsts. He was the first black student accepted to the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins and the first to receive a doctorate in economics at the University of Chicago.

After MSU, Dr. Wharton became the first black CEO of a Fortune 500 company: TIAA-CREF.

Now, Wharton has written an account of his eventful career: “Privilege and Prejudice: The Life of a Black Pioneer.”  It recounts all the chapters of Wharton’s life from his unique perspective as a child of privilege who nevertheless has faced racial discrimination.

Monday night at 7:30, Wharton will return to the MSU campus for a Wharton Center World View Lecture. He'll be interviewed by current MSU President Lou Anna Simon.

Current State's Mark Bashore talks with Clifton Wharton about his remarkable life.