dr-payne-new Dr. N. Joyce Payne
Thurgood Marshall College Fund

Biographical Summary:

Dr. Payne is the founder and a member of the Board of Directors of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF). She is a pioneer and authority on educational issues, especially those relating to women and minorities,with regard to higher education and labor force participation.

Biographical Highlights:

  • Former Executive Director of the National Alliance for Public Trust, a new organization committed to advancing principled leadership, inspired scholarship and trusted stewardship
  • Senior Social Scientist (consultant) with Gallup
  • Former Vice President, Office for the Advancement of Public Black Colleges (OAPBC) and Council of Student Affairs of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC) in cooperation with the American Association of State College and Universities (AASCU)
  • Former President of Global Systems, Inc.
  • Former Senior staff member under the Carter Administration, with the President’s Advisory Committee for Women; the President’s National Advisory Council on Women’s Education Programs, and the White House Conference on Families
  • Formerly taught at Federal City College and George Washington University
  • Doctorate and Master’s degrees from Atlanta University
  • Bachelor’s degree in speech pathology from the District of Columbia’s Teachers College

Personal Attributes and Interests:

  • Authority on women and minority issues with regard to higher education and labor force participation
  • Author of numerous papers on women and minorities in higher education and the role of black colleges in an expanding economy
  • Commitment to higher education, particularly a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) education
  • Prolific writer, speaker and fundraiser

Other Boards and Organizations:

  • Former member of the national Board of AARP
  • Chair of the AARP Foundation Board
  • Member of the Foreign Service Performance Evaluation Board of the U.S. Department of State
  • Former member of the Advisory Equity Council of the U.S. Department of State
  • Former Chair and Board Member of the University of the District of Columbia

Current Focus:                              

  • Creating global partnerships with flagship universities in South Africa and Asia
  • Creating the Global Institute for the Advancement of Science
  • Building new models for leadership in advancing innovation


  • Honored with five honorary doctorates
  • Received Presidential Medal from Delaware State University
  • Member of the District of Columbia’s Hall of Fame
  • Member of the HBCU Hall of Fame
  • A founder of the Washington, DC chapter of the Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc.
  • Recognized by the Ford Foundation, Spencer Foundation and the U.S. Air Force for her work and accomplishments
  • Traveled extensively in Africa, Asia, South America and Europe

Favorite Quote:                   

"Education gives us the power to explore the infinite possibilities of human potential."

­Dr. N. Joyce Payne