Leatrice B. McKissack ’51, HON. D.H.L.

Leatrice B. McKissack '51,

Trustee Emerita (Named May 16, 2008)

Leatrice B. McKissack retired after seventeen years as Chief Executive Officer of McKissack & McKissack, an architectural and engineering construction management company with offices in Chicago, New York City, Philadelphia, PA, and Washington, DC. Mrs. McKissack has been cited by two Presidents of the United States for her business acumen and strategic vision. Called one of America’s most powerful and successful black businesswomen by BLACK ENTERPRISE magazine, she has received numerous awards: The National Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award (Presented by President Bush in 1990), and the Presidential Design Award (presented by President Clinton in 1994). Other honors and awards include The National Federation of Black Women Business Owners Courage Award; Howard University’s School of Business Award; Florida A&M University R. Joyce Whitley Award, YWCA Academy for Women of Achievement Award; National Conference of Christians and Jews Award; MBDE Women-Owned Business of the Year Award.

She has served on the Governor of Tennessee’s Economic Growth Board; Nashville Chamber of Commerce Board of Governors and the Nashville Symphony Board. Mrs. McKissack received her bachelor’s degree from Fisk University and a master’s degree in Psychology from Tennessee State University. In 1995, Mrs. McKissack received the NAFEO Distinguished Alumni Award.
Known as a patron of the arts, she serves on the Cheekwood Museum of Art Board and the New York American Federation of Art Board.

On October 17, 2003, Mrs. McKissack was honored at the Kennedy Center with a plaque and medal for the National Visionary Leadership Project founded by Camille Cosby, which is also mentioned in The Wealth of Wisdom. Most recently she was added to the list of History Makers. In May 2009, she received an honorary doctorate degree from Fisk University.