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Black History Month

THE LIFE OF URSULA BURNS

Childhood

Ursula Burns was the second child of three children who were all raised by a single mother living in a low income housing projects. Many people told me her she had three strikes against her: She was black. She was a girl. And she was poor.

Education

Ursula Burns's mother operated a home day care center and she also took cleaning and ironing jobs so that she could pay for Ursula to go to Cathedral High School, a Roman Catholic preparatory school. In college, she earned her bachelor's degree in mechincal enginnering in 1980 from the Polytechnic Institute of New York University in Brooklyn.  For that same year, she also began to pursue a master's degree in mechincal enginnering at Coloumbia University and she joined Xerox, a company that sells a wide variety of office equipment including scanners, printers, and multifunction system as a mechainical  enginnering intern.

Impactful Event #2

In 2009, Barack Obama selected Ursula Burns to help lead the STEM Education Coalition, which is a national alliance which has over 1,000 technological organization that strive to improve student partcipation and performance.

Impactful Event #1

In July 2009, Ursula Burns became the CEO of Xerox after Mulcahy, making her the first black woman to run a Fortune 500 company 

Impactful Event #3

Ursula Burns was also a membe of the President’s Export Council from 2010 to 2016, a group of labour, business, and government leaders who advise the president on methods to promote the growth of American exports. She chaired the committee in 2015–16.

Impactful Event #4

In July 1017, Ursula was made chairman for VEON, the world's 11th largest telecom service provider by subscribers, by its board of directors. 

Marriage

Ursula Burns was married to Lloyd Bean, who also used to work at Xerox until he died in 2019. The two used to live together Rochester, New York. Ursula Burns also has a daughter who was born in 2019 and is named Melissa and stepson named Malcolm and was born in 1989.

As Of Now

As of now, Ursula Burns is a founding board director of Change the Equation, which focuses on improving the U.S.'s education system in science, technology, engineering and math. She also published published a memoir, Where You Are Is Not Who You Are: A Memoir, in 2021.

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