Mervyn-Dymally copyAn ambassador, friend, and colleague to the University, Dr. Mervyn M. Dymally had an unwavering commitment to increasing health care and galvanizing the community.

Born in Trinidad, Dymally broke barriers as a black lawmaker in California and in Congress from the 1960’s through 1980’s. A man of many firsts, he became California’s first foreign-born black state assemblyman, first black state senator, first black lieutenant governor, and one of the first foreign-born blacks elected to the House of Representatives. Dymally was instrumental in the creation of CDU and is responsible for state and federal legislation that continues to benefit the University today, including Senate Bill 1026, also known as “the Dymally Bill,” passed in 1973 to allocate state support for CDU. He served as CDU’s first Director of the University’s Urban Health Institute and was named Professor Emeritus in the Life Sciences Institute, College of Medicine at CDU in April 2012. Dymally passed away in 2012, and today, the CDU School of Nursing bears his name.

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