Louis Stokes was the first African-American member of Congress from the State of Ohio and the first African-American to retire from the House of Representatives. Stokes served on the House Select Committee on Assassinations, which investigated the deaths of John F. Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
When Louis Stokes retired in 1998, he became the first African American in the history of the U.S. Congress to have completed 30 years in office. Stokes also served as vice chairman of the PEW Environmental Health Commission at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and was appointed by former Health and Human Services Secretary, Donna E. Shalala, as chairman of the Advisory Committee on Minority Health.
Louis Stokes is a longtime and consistent supporter of programs for underrepresented populations. Originally named the Alliance for Minority Participation (AMP), the program was re-named the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) through congressional action.