Dr. Molefi Kete Asante is Professor, Department of African American Studies at Temple University. Considered by his peers to be one of the most distinguished contemporary scholars, Asante has published 70 books, among the most recent are Maulana Karenga: An Intellectual Portrait, An Afrocentric Manifesto, Encyclopedia of African Religion, co-edited with Ama Mazama, The History of Africa: The Quest for Eternal Harmony, Cheikh Anta Diop: An Intellectual Portrait, Handbook of Black Studies, co-edited with Maulana Karenga, Encyclopedia of Black Studies, co-edited with Ama Mazama, Race, Rhetoric, and Identity: The Architecton of Soul, Erasing Racism: The Survival of the American Nation, Ancient Egyptian Philosophers, Scattered to the Wind, Custom and Culture of Egypt, and 100 Greatest African Americans. The second edition of his high school text, African American History: Journey of Liberation, 2nd Edition, is used in more than 400 schools throughout North America. The comprehensive Encyclopedia of African Religion, co-edited with Ama Mazama, will be published by Sage Publications in December 2008.
Asante has been recognized as one of the ten most widely cited African Americans. In the 1990s, Black Issues in Higher Education recognized him as one of the most influential leaders in the decade. Molefi Kete Asante graduated from Oklahoma Christian College in l964. He entered Pepperdine soon afterwards and Asante completed his M.A. at Pepperdine University in l965. He received his Ph.D. from UCLA at the age of 26 in l968 and was appointed a full professor at the age of 30 at the State University of New York at Buffalo. He chaired the Communication Department at SUNY-Buffalo from l973-1980. He worked in Zimbabwe as a trainer of journalists from l980 to l982. In the Fall of l984 Dr. Asante became chair of the African American Studies Program at Temple University where he created the first Ph.D. Program in African American Studies in 1987. He has directed more than 140 Ph.D. dissertations. He has written more than 400 articles and essays for journals, books and magazines and is the founder of the theory of Afrocentricity.
Asante was born in Valdosta, Ga., one of sixteen children. He is a poet, dramatist, and a painter. His work on African culture and philosophy and African American education has been cited by journals such as the Matices, Journal of Black Studies, Journal of Communication, American Scholar, Daedalus, Western Journal of Black Studies, and Africaological Perspectives. The Utne Reader called him one of the “100 Leading Thinkers” in America. In 2001, Transition Magazine said “Asante may be the most important professor in Black America.” He has appeared on Nightline, Nighttalk, BET, Macnell Lehrer News Hour, Today Show, the Tony Brown Show, Night Watch, Like It Is and 60 Minutes and more than one hundred local and international television shows. He has appeared in several movies including 500 Years Later, The Faces of Evil, and The Black Candle. In 2002 he received the distinguished Douglas Ehninger Award for Rhetorical Scholarship from the National Communication Association. The African Union cited him as one of the twelve top scholars of African descent when it invited him to give one of the keynote addresses at the Conference of Intellectuals of Africa and the Diaspora in Dakar in 2004. He was inducted into the Literary Hall of Fame for Writers of African Descent at the Gwendolyn Brooks Center at Chicago State University in 2004. Dr. Asante holds more than 100 awards for scholarship and teaching including the Fulbright, honorary doctorates from three universities, and is a guest professor at Zhejiang University.
In 1995 he was made a traditional king, Nana Okru Asante Peasah, Kyidomhene (Chee dom heni) of Tafo, Akyem, Ghana. Dr. Asante has been or is presently a consultant for a dozen school districts. He is the Chair of the United States Commission for FESMAN III to be held in Dakar, Senegal in 2011. He is the father of the filmmaker and writer, M. K. Asante, Jr., who teaches creative writing at Morgan State University. Asante was elected in September, 2009, by the Council of African Intellectuals as the Chair for the Diaspora Intellectuals in support of the United States of Africa. Molefi Kete Asante believes it is not enough to know, one must act to humanize the world.