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Brandon TerryBrandon Terry
Full Bio

Brandon Terry, an aspiring scholar, journalist, commentator, community organizer, entrepreneur, teacher, and political consultantwas born in Baltimore, Maryland to two parents who encouraged leadership, drive, and awareness. Brandons success is a testament to the strength of family and the belief that preparation creates opportunity. In 2001, Brandon became the first graduate of his Baltimore County public high school, Western School of Technology and Environmental Science, to attend an Ivy League school. He enrolled at Harvard University and graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2005 with a degree in Government and African and African American Studies.

As President of the Harvard Black Mens Forum (2003-2004), Brandon helped guide the organization to an increased membership and newfound status as one of the most financially active groups on campus while organizing a number of important programs including an annual alternative career fair, a hip-hop and politics initiative for the 2004 election season (covered by MTVNews and the Boston Globe), a group to increase minority representation on the student council, and numerous events with renowned black faculty members and national figures.

As a freshman, Brandon was inspired by a black female mentor and teacher at Harvard to get involved with the anti-sexual violence movement on campus and helped to turn the Black Mens Forum into a consistent and active supporter of the annual Take Back the Night Week and dialogue on sexual violence between black men and black women. As a senior, he also served as a peer educator for Harvards Office of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response in its first year of student-led anti-sexual violence trainings.

Perhaps his biggest organizational accomplishment to date is as a founder and core committee member of Unite Against AIDS, a coalition of groups whose first project was the inaugural Unite Against AIDS Summit: HIV/AIDS in Africa and the African Diasporaa huge attempt to mobilize students, particularly black students, around the issue of AIDS at home and abroad. The weekend-long summit drew over 600 attendees from around the country and featured some of the most respected activists, analysts, and leaders on HIV/AIDS in the world today. The Summit, at which Brandon gave closing remarks, has also been webcast to many more by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Off campus, Brandon was involved in public service, where he worked for youth mentoring programs, including the W.E.B. DuBois Society in Dorchester and the Mission Hill Summer Program in Roxbury. Brandon won the 2004 Benjamin Franklin Legacy Prize in Public Service for his work in the latter. He also wrote a bi-weekly opinion column for The Harvard Crimson, On The Real, which has been re-printed in numerous publications, and has also written pieces for The Baltimore Sun, The Harvard Independent, the Black Mens Forums REMIX magazine, New Deal Magazine, and The Black Guide to Life at Harvard and provided commentary for Time Magazine, The Boston Globe, MTV News, Bloomberg News, and other publications and news services. Brandons writings (and activism) on Sudan in particular garnered significant attention on and off campus, as the recent divestment campaign at Harvard gained momentum and significant victories.

Still devoting time and energy to his academics, Brandon conducted independent undergraduate research work on both the effects of residential segregation on black political participation and black feminist political thought as a Mellon Fellow. The Mellon Foundation, the Institute of Politics, the Harvard College Research Fund, and the Deans Summer Research Fund, also funded Brandons senior thesis research for his political philosophy thesis entitled, Birth of a (Black) Nation: Redefining, Reconsidering, and Reconstructing Black Nationalism, which received Magna Plus honors.

Currently, Brandon is studying political philosophy abroad at the University of Oxford on the prestigious Michael Von Clemm Fellowship and writing a thesis on the ideal of authenticity and its intersection with political peoplehood. After Oxford, he hopes to pursue a PhD in political science, with an emphasis on theory and philosophy. Ultimately, Brandon desires to lead a think tank that deals with issues of race, class, and inequality globally, as well as pursue other projects in education, business, real estate, politics, and entertainment.

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