Khalid Muhammad (born Harold Moore Jr.; January 12, 1948 – February 17, 2001) was a black activist who came to prominence as the National Assistant to Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam (NOI). After a racially inflammatory 1993 speech at Kean College, Muhammad was condemned and removed from his position in the Nation of Islam by Louis Farrakhan. He was also censured by both Houses of the United States Congress.
After being removed from the Nation of Islam he served as the National Chairman of the New Black Panther Party until his death in 2001 from a brain aneurysm. Despite the controversy that followed him, his strong denunciations of white power gained him the support of some in the black community.
Harold Moore Jr. was raised by his aunt, Carrie Moore Vann, in Houston, Texas, where he attended Bruce Elementary School, E.O. Smith Junior High School, and all-Black Phyllis Wheatley High School. He was also an Eagle Scout. After graduating high school, Moore went to Dillard University in Louisiana, where he was known as Harold Vann, to pursue a degree in theological studies, but he did not graduate. At this time, he ministered at Sloan Memorial Methodist Church. In 1967, he was initiated into Omega Psi Phi fraternity (Theta Sigma chapter). Later, Moore transferred to Pepperdine University and earned his Bachelor’s degree.
Nation of Islam
In 1970, while attending Dillard, Moore joined the Nation of Islam, which was then under the leadership of Elijah Muhammad. He changed his name to Harold Smith or Harold X, then to Malik Rushaddin, became Minister Louis Farrakhan’s protégé, and was active as a recruiter within the organization. In 1978, Rushaddin was appointed Western Regional Minister of the Nation of Islam and leader of Mosque #27. In 1983, Minister Farrakhan named him Khalid after the Islamic general Khalid ibn al-Walid, a follower of the prophet Muhammad, calling him the Sword of Allah.
By 1984, Muhammad had become one of Louis Farrakhan’s most trusted advisors in the Nation of Islam. He traveled to Libya on a fund-raising trip, where he became well acquainted with that country’s leader, Muammar al-Gaddafi. Muhammad’s dedication to Farrakhan and to the message of the NOI eventually secured him the title of national spokesman and he was named one of Louis Farrakhan’s friends in 1981. He served at Nation of Islam mosques in New York and Atlanta throughout the 1980s. A federal court convicted him in 1987 of mortgage fraud and sentenced him to nine months in prison. After his prison term he returned to the Nation, becoming Farrakhan’s national advisor in 1991.