Regarding his leadership activities as a college student, Larry Pinkney received a letter of recommendation from Southwest State University President Robert L. Carothers in 1985.

Letter of recommendation (image below):

Southwest State University • Marshall, Minnesota 56258

October 2, 1985

To Whom It May Concern:

During the 1985 academic year, I had the pleasure to come to know Larry Pinkney, a student at Southwest State University. Larry was clearly a leader in our student body, a person who worked effectively with students and with faculty and staff as well. He brought a new prospective to old problems, a new consciousness to our students, dosed out with humor and common sense.

Two specific instances may illustrate his leadership at the University. During the spring term, we had a rather ugly incident in which a number of international students were getting harassing, racist telephone calls. Mutual recriminations had begun. Larry met with the International Students Organization, set up a campus-wide meeting to open and explore attitudes and values and assisted our Student Life staff in resolving the tensions. His work, entirely voluntary, was appreciated by all involved.

During the winter term, I decided to teach a sophomore literature course, which I try to do once a year. In the syllabus is always a section of Afro-American literature, and when we came to the section, I asked Larry to join me and take a turn at the podium. He did a superb job, drawing out students and assisting them in confronting their assumptions. It was a fine evening.

Larry [Pinkney] is a bright and articulate individual who I enjoyed having in our University community. While I cannot speak to his experience prior to coming to Southwest, on the basis of my interaction with him, I am pleased to recommend him to you.


Robert L. Carothers



Telephone [omitted]

Southwest State University is an Affirmative Action / Equal Opportunity Institution

10/2/1985 Letter of Recommendation from SSU President Robert L. Carothers

October 2, 1985 Letter of Recommendation from Southwest State University President Robert L. Carothers for student Larry Pinkney


Larry Pinkney is a veteran of the Black Panther Party, the former Minister of Interior of the Republic of New Africa, a former political prisoner and the only American to have successfully self-authored his civil/political rights case to the United Nations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. In connection with his political organizing activities, Pinkney was interviewed in 1988 on the nationally televised PBS News Hour, formerly known as The MacNeil/Lehrer News Hour, and more recently on the nationally syndicated Alex Jones Show. Pinkney is a former university instructor of political science and international relations, and his writings have been published in various places, including The Boston Globe, San Francisco BayView newspaper, Black Commentator, Intrepid Report, Global Research (Canada), LINKE ZEITUNG (Germany), 107 Cowgate (Ireland and Scotland), and Mayihlome News (Azania/South Africa). He is in the archives of Dr. Huey P. Newton (Stanford University, CA), cofounder of the Black Panther Party. For more about Larry Pinkney see the book, Saying No to Power: Autobiography of a 20th Century Activist and Thinker, by William Mandel [Introduction by Howard Zinn]. (Click here to read excerpts from the book.)


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