Cyril Emmanuel King

Gov. Cyril Emmanuel King

Virgin Islands

Term(s)
February 1, 1969 - July 1, 1969
January 1, 1975 - January 1, 1978

Born
April 7, 1921

Passed
January 2, 1978

Party
Independent

School(s)
American University

Status:
Died in Office

Birth State
Virgin Islands

Military Service:
Army

Family:
Married, one child

BIO

CYRIL EMMANUEL KING was born in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, on April 7, 1921. King served with the U.S. Army during World War II. In 1951, he received a bachelor’s degree in public administration from American University. In 1949 he was appointed as an aide to Senator Hubert Humphrey, becoming the first black to serve in the office of a U.S. senator. In 1957 the Organic Act Committee of the Virgin Islands legislature voted to appoint King as its deputy in Washington, D.C., to secure congressional action to amend the Organic Act, the “constitution” of the Virgin Islands. In 1971 President Kennedy appointed him Virgin Islands government secretary, a post equivalent to the present position of lieutenant governor. While serving in that position, he represented the State Department on a five-week African tour. King was Acting Governor of the Virgin Islands for six months in 1969, was elected to the Virgin Islands Senate in 1972, and was elected governor for a four-year term in 1974. He died in office on January 2, 1978.