The life and career of New York’s first African American mayor, David N. Dinkins, is one for the history books. Now, there will be no better place than Columbia for scholars looking to write them. The David N. Dinkins Papers and Oral History Project, housed at Columbia University Libraries, has now been completed, offering researchers a wealth of material to study the 106th mayor’s contributions to politics and society.
Dinkins himself has been a professor of public policy at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs since 1994, when his single term ended. For 18 years, he has hosted the annual David N. Dinkins Leadership and Public Policy Forum, which invites prominent figures to campus to discuss current events. Last April’s forum featured as its keynote speaker Hillary Clinton, who delivered a major address on criminal justice reform and race.