Leonard H. Robinson, Jr.

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Leonard H. Robinson Jr., 63, president and chief executive of the Africa Society and a former State Department official in the Reagan and Bush administrations, died July 25 [2006] of complications of a kidney infection at Washington Hospital Center.

"As an outgrowth of the Africa Summit, Mr. Robinson led efforts to create the Africa Society, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to strengthening public awareness and support for Africa. It came into existence in 2001...

"From 1964 to 1967, he was a Peace Corps volunteer in India and, at 23, was named the Peace Corps' associate director for India. He later became the agency's director of minority recruitment.

"He became interested in Africa in the early 1970s, his brother, Michael Robinson of Los Angeles, recalled. At the time, he was working in Ghana and Kenya for Family Planning International Assistance, then the international division of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America...

"From 1985 to 1990, he served as president of the African Development Foundation...

"He returned to the State Department's Africa Bureau in 1990, serving as deputy assistant secretary of state with special responsibility for Central and West Africa. He also directed U.S. diplomatic initiatives toward resolving the Liberian civil war.

"In 1997, he established LHR International Group, a consulting firm that provided U.S. foreign policy analysis for African and Asian leaders and governments. Also in 1997, he was named to the board of the newly created National Summit on Africa, which led to his position with the Africa Society.

"His marriages to Courtney Butler Robinson, Julia Davis Robinson and Cassandra Wilson Robinson ended in divorce.

"In addition to his brother, survivors include a daughter from his first marriage, Kemberley Robinson of Houston, and a daughter from his second marriage, Rani Robinson of the District; and his mother, Winnie T. Robinson of Durham, N.C." [1]

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  1. Leonard Robinson; Led Africa Society, washingtonpost, accessed March 18, 2009.