Clayborne Carson

Clayborne Carson, Ph.D. is Martin Luther King, Jr. Centennial Professor Emeritus and Senior Fellow, Stanford’s Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Stanford University.

Dr. Carson has devoted most of his professional life to the study of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the movements King inspired. Since receiving his doctorate from UCLA in 1975, Dr. Carson has taught at Stanford University, where he has served as Martin Luther King, Jr., Centennial Professor of History (now Emeritus). In 1985, Coretta Scott King invited Dr. Carson to direct a long-term project to edit and publish an authoritative edition of her late husband’s speeches, sermons, correspondence, publications, and unpublished writings. Under his direction, the King Papers Project has produced seven volumes of The Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr. In 2005, Carson founded the Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute to endow and expand the educational outreach of the King Papers Project.

Dr. Carson is author of several books and many publications and has participated in well over a dozen award-winning documentaries and productions. He has received four honorary degrees and numerous other awards including the Frederick Jackson Turner Award of the Organization of American Historians, the John W. Blassingame Award of the Southern Historian Association, and the International Award for Promoting Gandhian Values Outside India from the Jamnalal Bajaj Foundation in Mumbai, India.

Dr. Carson lives in Palo Alto, California with his wife, Susan, and daughter, Temera.