Prof Toyin Falola, a distinguished scholar, a Professor of African studies and a foremost Professor of History at the University of Texas Austin in United States, is an unparalleled intellectual whose work on African history has impacted many all over the world.
The renowned Professor, who was born in the ancient city of Ibadan on the 1st of January 1953, began his career as a schoolteacher in Pahayi School, Ilaro in 1970.
His quest for knowledge led him to the shores of the University of Ile-Ife, now Obafemi Awolowo University, where he earned a Bachelors of Arts degree in History. Prof Toyin still felt unfulfilled; he applied for his Ph.D. at the same University and graduated in 1981. He continued as a lecturer at the University of Ife, imparting knowledge into students until he moved to Texas in 1991.
Prof. Toyin Falola has also held short-term teaching appointments at the University of Cambridge in England, York University in Canada and Smith College of Massachusetts in the United States, The Australian National University in Canberra, Australia and the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Lagos. He is currently the Jacob and Frances Sanger Mossiker Chair in the Humanities at the University of Texas at Austin, United States.
The 62 year old scholar has authored more than 100 scholarly books and countless number of journals.
His interest in African History Research earned him the status as the most globally celebrated African and African humanist scholar in 2010. Some of his books include; Yoruba Creativity: Fiction, Language, Life and Songs, with Ann Genova (2005; A History of Nigeria, with Matthew M. Heaton; Britain and Nigeria: Exploitation or Development?; Pawnship, Slavery, and Colonialism in Africa, with Paul E. Lovejoy (2003); African Urban Spaces in Historical Perspective, with Steven J. Salm (2005); Historical Dictionary of Nigeria, with Ann Genova; Mouth Sweeter than Salt: An African Memoir; Yoruba Warlords of the Nineteenth Century; Yoruba Gurus: Indigenous Production of Knowledge in Africa;The Power of African Cultures, Rise and Fall of Nigeria (Second Republic) co-authored by Julius Ihonvbere and many more. Four of his books won the best books awards between 2004 and 2010, while some have been translated into other languages, including Chinese.
He is the Editor General of the Cambria African Studies Series (Cambria Press), co-editor of the Journal of African Economic History, a Fellow of the Historical Society of Nigeria and the Nigerian Academy of Letters.
Prof Falola has received various career awards and honors, including the Jean Holloway Award for Teaching Excellence, the Texas Exes Teaching Award, and the Ibn Khaldun Distinguished Award for Research Excellence, Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa by the City University of New York, College of Staten Island and many more.
For his singular and distinguished contribution to the study of Africa, his students and colleagues have presented him with three Festschrifts – two edited by Adebayo Oyebade, The Transformation of Nigeria: Essays in Honor of Toyin Falola, and The Foundations of Nigeria: Essays in Honor of Toyin , and one edited by Akin Ogundiran, Pre-Colonial Nigeria: Essays in Honor of Toyin Falola.
DAWN Commission recognises you today for your academic brilliance, preserving our history and heritage through your writings and documentations and more importantly for imparting your knowledge into the coming generations. Kudos sir