Honoring America's 1st African-American Astronaut

October 11, 2017

This fall marks 50 years since the death of Major Robert H. Lawrence Jr., a 1956 chemistry graduate of Bradley and the nation's first African-American astronaut. In December of 1967, following his appointment to the Manned Orbital Laboratory program, Major Lawrence was killed while training another pilot in a Lockheed F-104 jet at Edwards Air Force Base when the student crash-landed the plane.

Since 1988, Bradley has honored his legacy with the Robert H. Lawrence endowed Lectureship. The Mund-Lagowski Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry is pleased to announce that Dr. Herman B. White, Jr., a particle physicist from the Fermilab, will present "Pioneering in Science, Space, and Society" for this year's Lawrence Lecture.

The Major Robert H. Lawrence, Jr. Memorial Scholarship at Bradley was established the same year of his death and in 1989 the Lawrence Conference Room was dedicated in Bradley's Olin Hall, containing the Lawrence portrait by Wm. F. Hardin ('50).

The Lawrence Lecture will be held at 5 p.m. on October 12 in the Lawrence Lecture Hall (Olin room 164).