Maxine Roach H’13, Honorary Alumna

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Maxine Roach H’13


Dr. Maxine Roach H’13 has a long familial history with Bloomfield College. It started with her father, Dr. Max L. Roach H’93, a legendary jazz percussionist and music professor, who first came to the campus as a musical performer of the classical music of African Americans. His introduction to the College was inspiring, as his percussion ensemble performed for what would become only the first of many future benefit concerts attracting other jazz giants to the small college.

The senior Dr. Roach became enamored with the institution and soon recommended to his daughter, a professional violist in her own right, that she perform at an upcoming concert. Dr. Roach, like her father, found herself drawn to the mission and values of the College.

“I remember attending student recognition events that simply brought tears to my eyes,” she said. “The success stories of Bloomfield College students were very moving, often bound together with ‘against all odds’ effort and sacrifice. I find that excellence comes from being supported and that is what Bloomfield College provides.”

Dr. Roach, who received a B.A. in music from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, is known for her work on A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019), Do the Right Thing (1989) and Malcolm X (1992). Like her father who established the Max Roach Endowed Scholarship in 1994, she became a strong benefactor of Bloomfield College, and established the Sonia Sanchez Scholarship Fund in 2017 to support deserving students in their paths to earning a college degree.

“I know that my education took a village, and that this continues to be the case for many hard-working students,” she added. “It is soulfully gratifying to be a supporter, and to be part of the village bringing excellence to the lives of Bloomfield College students.”

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