From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Pettigrew, L. [Luella] Eudora

(born: 1928) 

Luella Eudora Pettigrew was born in Hopkinsville, KY, the daughter of Corrye L. Newell Williams, and Warren C. Williams who was the first African American agricultural agent in Christian County. Dr. Pettigrew is a graduate of West Virginia State College [now West Virginia State University] and Southern Illinois University. Pettigrew was a professor at several universities, then for six years served as associate provost at the University of Delaware before being named president of SUNY College at Old Westbury in 1986. She was the first African American woman to become president of a SUNY campus; she retired in1998. She was also the first African American to become chair of a department at Michigan State University, 1974-78, and the first to become a central administrator at the University of Delaware. 1981-1986. Pettigrew's initial career plan was to become a concert pianist; she earned her BMus in 1950. She switched career paths when she was in her early 30s, leaving Kentucky to enroll at Southern Illinois, where she earned a masters in counseling and a Ph.D. in educational psychology. For more see S. C. Schaer, "Positive thinker L. Eudora Pettigrew sunny-old Westbury's president, is both a role model and a commanding presence," Newsday (Melville, NY, Nassau and Suffolk edition), 08/19/1990, The Newsday Magazine section, p. 08; Campus History, an Old Westbury website; Who's Who Among African Americans, 1975-2006; and K. Grossman, "Dr. L. Eudora Pettigrew," The Crisis, October 1991, vol.98, no.8, pp.27-29.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Christian County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Hopkinsville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: Newsday (newspaper)
NKAA Source: Who's who among African Americans
NKAA Source: Crisis (periodical)

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Pettigrew, L. [Luella] Eudora,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed January 16, 2021,

Last modified: 2019-08-26 20:36:32