Dr. Lez Edmond

Dr. Lez Edmond was a Professor of Psychology and the Social Sciences at the College of Professional Studies of St. John's University. He worked at St. John's for more than 19 years. Prior to that, he was Chairperson of Africana Studies at Seton Hall University. He received his Ph.D. from the Union Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio, studying under famed psychologist Carl Rogers.

In 1962, Edmond co-authored with Earl Sweeting the book African History: An Illustrated Handbook, presenting the accomplishments of the continent of Africa and its people. In 1964, Edmond wrote “Harlem Diary,” chronicling his thoughts and observances about Harlem's 1964 race riot. “Harlem Diary” appeared in Ramparts magazine, a now-defunct major national magazine of the American Left.

The article, used in several journalism classes for more than three decades, was reprinted in Reporting Civil Rights: American Journalism, a major compilation of journalism of the era. By the late 1960s, Edmond had become a known civil rights activist in Harlem. He had worked closely with several civil rights leaders, including Malcolm X. He was part of the “brain trust” of Malcolm’s Organization of Afro-American Unity (OAAU). Dr. Edmond is a participant in the HistoryMakers oral history interview project, now acquired by the Library of Congress.