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Henry Louis Gates, an author and scholar of African American literature, was recently elected a member of the Pulitzer Prize Board. Columbia University awards the annual prizes based on the board’s recommendations. Currently, there are two other African Americans ont eh 19-member board: John L. Dotson, Jr., president and publsiher of the Akron Beacon Journal, and Marilyn Yarbrough, professor of law at the University of North Carolina. Members may serve for a maximum of nine years.

Gates in the W.E.B. Du Bois Professor of the Humanities at Harvard University and director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for Afro-American Research.