Born in New Orleans in February 1923, Samella Lewis has spent her life creating and considering the creative spirit of African Americans. She received her bachelor's degree from Dillard University and was taught and mentored by noted sculptress Elizabeth Catlett. In 1951, Lewis became the first African American woman to receive a doctorate in Art History and Fine Arts from Ohio State University. She was a professor for 15 years at Scripps College in California and was the institution's first tenured African American professor. In 1976, she created a journal called The International Review of African American Art and helped found the Museum of African American Art in Los Angeles County, Calif.. Throughout her life, Lewis has been honored by many organizations and is known as the godmother of African American art.