On behalf of the Board of Trustees of The Africa-America Institute, I would like to join with others in expressing deepest sympathy at the passing of Emmett Jefferson “Pat” Murphy, a distinguished African historian and former AAI staff executive. Pat passed away on June 19, 2013, in Sarasota, Florida. His family held a memorial service for him on Oct. 27, at the Amherst College Alumni House in Amherst, Mass.
At AAI, Pat worked in program and executive positions from 1954 to 1970 in Washington, DC and later in New York City; Accra, Ghana; and Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania. He served as AAI’s Executive Vice President, where he helped to establish our country office in Accra in 1957, the year of Ghana’s independence. Today, more than 600 Ghanaians have benefited from academic and professional training through AAI’s advanced education and training programs.
Launching his career as an African specialist, he was a visiting lecturer in social anthropology at South Africa’s University College of Fort Hare, and wrote a series of books on African history. In 1975, Pat was named Coordinator and Chief Executive Officer of Five College, Inc., the consortium linking Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, and Smith colleges and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. After retiring as coordinator in 1988, he served as Five College Professor of African Studies, which was based at Smith College, until his retirement in 1991.