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Viola Osborne Baskerville, class of 1973, recalled that there were only "about 12 undergraduate African-American students and three or four graduate students on campus" when she came to William & Mary in 1969. She was one of six African-American students to enter the College for the fall term.

Baskerville was a member of the House of Delegates representing the 71st House District in Richmond, Virginia from 1997-2005 and a member of the Richmond City Council, 1992-1997. In addition to her BA from the College of William & Mary, she also earned a JD from the University of Iowa and was a Fulbright scholar in Germany.2 3 In 2005, Baskerville stepped down from her Delegate position to run for the Democratic nomination for Lieutenant Governor, but was unsuccessful in her bid. In December 2005, Baskerville was picked by incoming Virginia Governor, Tim Kaine to be Secretary of Administration.4

Her personal papers are at the Library of Virginia.


  • "All of Us: The African-American Experience on Campus," Clenise Platt, class of 1994, William & Mary Alumni Magazine, Winter 2003/2004, Vol. 69, No. 2.


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This website contains the best available information from known sources at the time it was written. Unfortunately, many of the early original records of William & Mary were destroyed by fires, military occupation, and the normal effects of time. The information in this website is not complete, and it changes as we continue to research and uncover new sources.