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Archives and Special Collections

This LibGuide is published to promote access to the F. D. Bluford Library and Special Collections at North Carolina A&T State University, and research of A&T history remotely.

Samuel D. Proctor, 1960-1964

Samuel Dewitt Proctor was born on July 13, 1914. A native of Norfolk, Virginia, he received the A.B. in language and literature from Virginia Union University, Richmond, Virginia in 1942, the B.D. from Crozer Theological Seminary, Rochester, New York in 1945 and the Th.D. from Boston University in 1950. On July 1, 1960, Dr. Proctor accepted the invitation from A&T College to become president, having served successfully as pastor of the Pond Street Baptist Church in Providence, Rhode Island and professor, dean of the School of Religion, vice president and president of Virginia Union University.

Dr. Proctor was only thirty-nine years old when he was inaugurated as the college’s fifth president. His administration, though marked by brevity, was indeed significant. He reinforced the spirit of excellence among faculty and students and nurtured a sense of security and well being throughout the campus. New positions were created, old animosities of the past died away and some additions were made to the physical plant. Recognizing his skill in handling people and in building programs, the United States government called him in January 1962 to serve the country as Peace Corps director in Nigeria. Dr. Proctor resumed his presidential duties at A&T on September 1, 1963 but on March 1, 1964, he announced his resignation to become effective April 10, 1964.

Commenting upon his resignation, Dr. Proctor stated, “despite my deep personal loyalties to higher education in general and A&T in particular, the urgency of the summons to serve the country especially after the death of John F. Kennedy seems overriding.” Dr. Proctor died on May 26, 1997 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.