- Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site
International Civil Rights: Walk of Fame
Herman J. Russell
Herman J. Russell
1930 - present

A native of Atlanta, Herman J. Russell was an accomplished tradesman by the age of 12 having learned the plastering business from his father. He built a duplex on the parcel of land he purchased for $125 at age 16 and used his savings to help pay his tuition at Tuskegee University. After college, he worked alongside his father taking over the company in 1952. Today, the H.J. Russell & Company is a diversified organization that has expanded into the areas of construction, construction management, real estate development and property management.

Herman J. Russell is one of the greatest success stories in America and is a role model for African-American entrepreneurship. The H.J. Russell & Company is ranked as the fourth largest minority Industrial/Service company in the United States. His enterprises generate revenues of over $300 million dollars: ensure jobs for 2500 employees, and affordable homes for thousands of people.

A quiet, but influential civic leader, Russell worked very closely with Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1960’s. He became the first black member, and later president, of the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce. Mr. Russell is a Philanthropist who generously gives to his community. Herman J. Russell has received many awards and honors. He has two sons and one daughter who are executives in the Russell Company.