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The seven broad recommendations from the Presidential Committee, accepted by the Harvard Corporation, seek to remedy the harm caused to descendants, to our community and the nation, and to campus life and learning.


Recommendation 1

Engage and Support Descendant Communities by Leveraging Harvard’s Excellence in Education

Meira Levinson and Danielle Allen are developing a program through the Harvard Graduate School of Education that will support K-12 teachers and schools in teaching about slavery, its legacies, and how to address hard histories and contemporary controversies in the classroom.

Harvard & Legacy of Slavery Event

Recommendation 2

Honor Enslaved People through Memorialization, Research, Curricula, and Knowledge Dissemination

Tracy K. Smith and Dan Byers lead a 13-member committee spearheading the effort to memorialize enslaved individuals whose labor was instrumental in the establishment and development of Harvard.

The committee’s work

In April, the committee was joined by the leadership of James Madison’s Montpelier for the first in a series of discussions on how descendant communities can use their voice in addressing legacies of slavery.

Coverage from the eventOpens new window

Telling the Truth about All This: Reckoning with Slavery and Its Legacies at Harvard and Beyond

Recommendation 3

Develop Enduring Partnerships with Black Colleges and Universities

Ruth Simmons joins Harvard in July 2023 as a Senior Advisor to the president, focused on engagement with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).

Simmons’ announcement

Harvard Library is partnering with the HBCU Library Alliance to sustain and deepen capacity for the digitization, discovery, and preservation of African American history collections held in HBCU libraries and archives.

The library partnership

Richard Cellini

Recommendation 4

Identify, Engage, and Support Descendants

Richard Cellini leads the Remembrance Project, which will focus on enabling direct descendants to “recover their histories, tell their stories, and pursue empowering knowledge.”

The Remembrance Project

How Cellini’s team is “giving people back their stories”


Recommendation 5

Honor, Engage, and Support Native Communities

The Harvard University Native American Program and Harvard Radcliffe Institute held the Responsibility and Repair: Legacies of Indigenous Enslavement, Indenture, and Colonization at Harvard and Beyond Conference in November 2023.  The conference brought together Indigenous and non-Indigenous scholars, leaders, and community members to explore critical questions of reckoning and reconciliation.

Read coverage from the event


Recommendation 6

Establish an Endowed Legacy of Slavery Fund to Support the University’s Reparative Efforts

President Larry Bacow and the Harvard Corporation allocated $100 million to fund and implement the Report on Harvard and the Legacy of Slavery’s recommendations in perpetuity.

The announcement


Recommendation 7

Ensure Institutional Accountability

Sara Bleich and her team in the Office of the Vice Provost for Special Projects will build out infrastructure to oversee the University-wide implementation of the recommendations of Harvard and the Legacy of Slavery.

Learn more