Elaine Ray is a writer, editor and now family historian who began her career in book publishing in Boston and New York. She spent several years at Essence magazine, first as editor of the magazine’s career and travel sections and ultimately as executive editor.
For several years, she served on the editorial board of the Boston Globe, helping to shape the paper’s positions on such topics as civil rights, domestic violence, K-12 education, Haitian refugees and South Africa. In 1990, she and her colleague Peggy Hernandez shared first prize for editorial writing from the Education Writers Association. In 1993 and 1995, respectively, Elaine won second prize and third prize, for editorial writing from the New England Associated Press News Executives Association. In 1995 she won a John S. Knight Journalism Fellowship at Stanford University.
Elaine has written freelance articles and columns for the Boston Globe, Essence, Black Enterprise, Modern Maturity, the San Jose Mercury News and the San Francisco Chronicle.
In 2005, Elaine joined forces with other Palo Alto Unified School District parents to found the Parent Network for Students of Color, an organization dedicated to advocating at all levels to create a climate of high expectations and academic achievement for all. She currently serves as president of the board of Foundation for a College Education.
A native of Pittsburgh, Elaine earned her B.A. from Chatham College and an M.A. in journalism from Kent State University. Her daughter, Zuri Adele, is an actress and a 2012 graduate of the Spelman College.