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*Calvin L. Hicks was born on this date in 1933. He was a Black journalist, activist, editor, and music educator.
Born in Boston, Hicks wrote for the Boston Chronicle while still in high school. He graduated from Drake University. After writing for the Baltimore Afro-American newspaper, Hicks moved to New York City.
In 1960, he founded and chaired the On Guard Committee for Freedom, a Black nationalist literary organization on the Lower East Side. Its members included Nannie and Walter Bowe, Harold Cruse, Amiri Baraka, Tom Dent, Rosa Guy, Joe Johnson, Archie Shepp, Walter Bowe, and Sarah Wright. The organization viewed the liberation of Africa as part of the struggle for Black liberation in the United States. On Guard published their newspaper with Hicks as the editor. Hicks was executive director of the Monroe Defense Committee in support of Robert F. Williams and was active in the Fair Play for Cuba Committee.
He was one of the founders of Umbra Magazine. Hicks was also a member of the Harlem Writers Guild and active in the Black Arts Movement. His articles appeared in Freedomways, New Challenge, and the New York Age. He was an instructor at Brooklyn College, Richmond College (now known as College of Staten Island), and City College of New York. In 1969, he taught at Brandeis University, Goddard College, Brown University, and Roxbury Community College. He was a co-founder of the Black Educators Roundtable in Boston.
From 1974 to 1975, he was a Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate fellow. In 1984, he graduated from Cambridge College with a master's degree in the philosophy of education. He was a liberal arts faculty and administration member at the New England Conservatory of Music from 1992 to 2008. He was also on the faculty of the Longy School of Music.
He died on August 25, 2013, in New York. The Calvin Hicks Memorial Award for the Study of Music was established in his memory.