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Lorenzo Brown, president, managing editor of Sister 2 Sister magazine passes at 73

(August 25, 2015) After a long battle against cancer, Dr. Lorenzo Brown, president and managing editor of Sister 2 Sister magazine, died August 21st at the age of 73. He was also the husband of the magazine's publisher, Jamie Foster Brown. The publication, founded in 1988 as a family-owned business that included their two sons, Randall and Russell. It was one of the nation's most widely read celebrity monthlies. The magazine discontinued its print version last year in favor of its Website,

Brown had a long and successful career as an educator, author, entrepreneur and social justice advocate. Known as affectionately by many as "Big Lo," he championed a number African-American causes.

He was born on December 26, 1941 to the late Claude and Mabel O'Neil Brown. He was the youngest of their seven children. Although he was raised in Marion, Alabama, he was actually born in Selma, since Marion did not have a hospital for "colored women."

The family migrated north to the Chicago suburb of Evanston, Illinois, where Lorenzo graduated from Evanston Township High School. He received his bachelor's degree from Roosevelt University and his master's degree from Syracuse University, both in economics.

Lorenzo was one of many professors who participated in the 1960s civil rights struggle. As part of a movement to improve the Historically Black Colleges and Universities in the South, he returned to Alabama and taught economics at Miles College in Birmingham. While there his passion for racial equality led him to become involved in many civil rights activities.

During a return visit to Chicago, Lorenzo met the love of his life, Jamie Foster, in the cafeteria of Roosevelt University. They married in Alabama six months later. The couple moved to Stockholm, Sweden, where Lorenzo received his doctorate in economics. His dissertation, "Return to Scale Economics," was selected by the University of Stockholm as a textbook for the economics curriculum. Lorenzo and Jamie traveled and studied extensively throughout Europe. While in Sweden, they welcomed their sons, Randall and Russell, into the world.

When they returned to the United States they made their home in Washington, D.C. and Lorenzo taught economics at Howard University and became a prolific author of articles like "Why Should Black-Owned Businesses Hire Predominately Black Labor Forces," published in the Review of Black Political Economy.

After leaving Howard University he went to work for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) while concurrently consulting for the C&P Telephone Company (now part of Verizon). In 1992, he left FERC to work full-time with Jamie on a newsletter that she'd started after leaving a position at Black Entertainment Television. That newsletter was the beginning of Sister 2 Sister magazine, where Lorenzo served as the managing editor and company president for 23 years.

Lorenzo leaves behind his wife of 46 years, Jamie Foster Brown; two sons, Randall and Russell; three sisters, Octavia (Jim), Edna (Charlie) and Geraldine; two sisters-in-law, Stella and Shirley; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family and dear friends.

A memorial service celebrating his life will be held on Monday, August 31 at Zion Church, 3600 Brightseat Road, Landover, MD 20785, 301-583-1790. Doors will open at 6:00 pm and services begin at 7:00 pm. Donations and love offerings can be made to Jamie Foster Brown, PO Box 41148, Washington, DC 20018.

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