A native Charlestonian and grandson of the late renowned blacksmith Philip Simmons, Ofunniyin – known around campus as “Dr. O” – began teaching at the College in 1996 in the Young Scholars Program at the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture.
He left Charleston in 1997 to pursue a Ph.D in anthropology at the University of Florida before returning to the College and the classroom in 2013.
What makes Ofunniyin progressive?
“I am progressive because I am a visionary and I believe in the goodness in humanity,” says Ofunniyin. “I am a servant to and lover of people.”
The profile in CHARLIE discusses Ofunniyin’s current efforts to document and celebrate his grandfather’s life and work. “I spent a great deal of time with my grandfather; I honor his legacy and he continues to watch over and guide me.”