Lifetime Dedicated to Social Justice and Equity
President & Founder, The Algebra Project, Inc.
Bob Moses was born and raised in Harlem, NY, where he attended public schools. He received a B.A. in Philosophy from Hamilton College in 1956, and received an M.A. in Philosophy from Harvard University in 1957. Moses directed the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee’s Mississippi Voter Registration Project from 1961-1964; was co-Director of the Council of Federated Organizations 1962-1964, and was a lead organizer for the 1964 Mississippi “Freedom” Summer Project, parachuting Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party to 1964 National Democratic Convention in Atlantic City.
Moses taught mathematics at the Samé School in Tanzania, East Africa from 1969 – 1976, when he returned to the United States and re-entered the doctoral program in Philosophy at Harvard.
A MacArthur Foundation Fellow 1982-1987, he used his fellowship to begin the Algebra Project, which uses mathematics as organizing tool for quality education for all children in America. With support of the National Science Foundation the Algebra Project works with middle and high school students who previously performed in the lowest quartile on standardized exams, proposing that they attain a high school math benchmark: graduate on time in four years, ready to do college math for college credit.
Moses is co-author with Charles E. Cobb, Jr., of the book Radical Equations—Civil Rights from Mississippi to the Algebra Project (Beacon Press, 2001); and co-editor with Theresa Perry, et al., of Quality Education as a Constitutional Right-creating a grassroots movement to transform public schools (Beacon, 2010). For information on Algebra Project approaches to the teaching and learning of mathematics, please see Practitioner’s Use of the 5-Step Curricular Process, a 3 min. video:
Moses was the Distinguished Visitor for the Center for African American Studies at Princeton University 2011-2012, and has been an adjunct lecturer at NYU School of Law from 2012 - 2016. He has served on the Education Advisory Committee of the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute from 2004 to the present. In May 2016, the University of North Carolina press published Dr. Laura Visser-Maessen’s book, Robert Parris Moses – a life in civil rights and leadership at the grassroots. He has received numerous honorary doctorate degrees, has delivered keynote speeches and workshops nationwide, and has served as principal investigator on eight National Science Foundation mathematics education research awards to date; most recently NSF INCLUDES Design and Development Launch Pilot award # 1649342 and NSF INCLUDES Conference award # 1650533.
For more information on current efforts to develop a national “We the People – Math Literacy for All” Alliance that is calling on the nation for Direct Federal Investment and Involvement in supporting mathematics literacy for all K-12 students, and particularly for students performing in the lowest quartile on state standardized exams, please visit https://www.mathliteracyforall.org and see a 2019 video available here: