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Issue Date:  October 6, 2006

Activist, former Africa correspondent for NCR dies at 59


Carole J.L. Collins, an activist since the 1970s in organizations seeking global economic justice, a campaigner against South African apartheid and a writer specializing in African affairs, died at home in Long Beach, Calif., Sept. 22 from complications associated with congestive heart failure. She was 59.

Collins was Africa correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter in the mid-1980s, United Nations/Diplomatic Correspondent in 1991-92, and a freelance contributor to NCR from the late 1970s to the 1990s. Her writings also appeared in journalistic and scholarly publications worldwide, including academic and policy journals Africa Confidential, Africa Recovery, The Chronicle of Higher Education, France’s Le Monde, Middle East Report, In These Times, Journal of Palestine Studies, Ms., Multinational Monitor, The Nation, Newsday, Italy’s Nigrizia , Pacific News Service, The Progressive, the Review of African Political Economy, the South African Weekly Mail, and the Women’s Features Service.

In the early 1980s she was a visiting fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, and was the national coordinator of the campaign to oppose bank loans to South Africa.

From 1986 to 1990, she was the international affairs representative for Southern Africa for the American Friends Service Committee in Zimbabwe. She later served as senior research associate in an office funded by the U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance, and published a study on humanitarian intervention in Somalia.

She served as national coordinator of Jubilee 2000 USA in the late 1990s, leading the U.S. arm of an international movement demanding cancellation of the debts of the poorest nations.

Collins earned a BA with honors at Bryn Mawr in 1968. She dropped out of a graduate program in the University of Chicago Political Science Department while participating in the 1968-69 student protests against the Vietnam War. She earned an MA in International Affairs at Columbia University in 1993.

Since moving to Long Beach in 2002, Collins continued to write and work on African issues, while devoting her time principally to family, especially her 7-year-old son Joseph Samora Collins Askin. She often referred to herself as “the oldest hockey mom.”

She is survived by son Joseph, husband Steve Askin, brothers Gary and Charles Dillard Collins, and sister Rosalie Gleeman.

National Catholic Reporter, October 6, 2006

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