Henry Louis Gates Junior is a well-respected African American writer, editor, scholar, educator, and American literary critic who enormously advanced the research of black culture. He built himself a reputation on his talents of research and has become a highly regarded influential public intellectual. Gates was the first African American to receive a Ph. D. from Cambridge University and has since then taught at many prestigious universities before joining the faculty at Harvard. The professor has received fifty-one honorary degrees, has been named one of Time magazine's "25 Most Influential Americans,” and is currently the director of W.E.B. DuBois Institute for African Americans and African research at Harvard University. Gates possesses many other accomplishments including hosting several PBS television shows on tracing people’s ancestry, and rediscovered what is believed to be the first novel published by an African American in the United Stated and republished it. Henry Louis Gates Jr. made it a goal to help Americans find out where they come from, how they got here, and to help uncover their family stories that have been lost.