Audrey F. Manley

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Audrey Forbes Manley
Audrey Manley, DHHS official bw photo.jpg
Surgeon General of the United States
In office
1 January 1995 – 1 July 1997
President Bill Clinton
Preceded by Joycelyn Elders
Succeeded by David Satcher
Personal details
Born (1934-03-25) March 25, 1934 (age 84)
Jackson, Mississippi, USA
Alma mater

Audrey Forbes Manley (born March 25, 1934) is an American pediatrician, and public health administrator. Manley was the first African-American woman appointed as chief resident at Cook County Children's Hospital, Chicago (1962), and the first to achieve the rank of Assistant Surgeon General (Rear Admiral) in 1988.[1]

Early life and education

Manley was born Audrey Forbes in 1934 in Jackson, Mississippi. Her parents were Ora Lee Buckhalter and Jesse Lee Forbes.[1] She was the eldest of three daughters in a tenant farming family, picking cotton at age 9.[1] The family moved to Chicago during World War II. She gained a music scholarship to attend Spelman College, Atlanta, majoring in chemistry and mathematics, followed by a scholarship to Meharry Medical College in Tennessee, where she graduated in 1959.[1]


Forbes held various medical appointments at the University of Chicago and University of California, moving back to Atlanta after her marriage in 1970. In 1976 she joined the U.S. Public Health Service. She studied sickle cell disease and gained a Master's in Public Health from Johns Hopkins University in 1987. Through the 1990s, she rose to become the first African-American woman appointed Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health in the U.S. Public Health Service, then appointed Deputy U.S. Surgeon General in 1994.[1]

Forbes was appointed acting Surgeon General of the United States from 1995 to 1997. From 1997 to 2002, Manley served as President of Spelman College, a historically black college for women in Atlanta, Georgia. She was the first alumna to be elected president of the college, carrying on the legacy of her husband Dr. Albert E. Manley, who was the first African American and male president of Spelman College from 1953 to 1976.[2][3]

Personal life

Forbes married Dr. Albert E. Manley, the first Black president of Spelman College in 1970.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Dr. Audrey Forbes Manley". Changing Face of Medicine, NLM. Retrieved 14 February 2017.
  2. ^ "History in Brief". Spelman College. Archived from the original on 22 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19.
  3. ^ "Dr. Audrey Forbes Manley Biography". 2002. Retrieved 2008-01-17.

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