George Brooks, Jr.

Dr. George Brooks, Jr. is a scientist and educator. The son of well-respected activists, he grew up in South Phoenix during the civil rights era.

Dr. George Brooks, Jr.
Student Researcher: Araya Jordan

Dr. George Brooks, Jr. born in 1955 in memorial hospital just off of 7th avenue in Phoenix AZ. He grew up in a house right off Broadway in a minority-based neighborhood. Brooks appreciated his neighborhood and he embraced it. Growing up in South Phoenix really showed him how fast a community could grow. He started seeing it everyday as a big backyard with rural trees and wide-open spaces, with unexpected wildlife, like toads. Brooks grew up alongside South Phoenix, as it blossomed into a diverse part of Arizona. The once rural community is now very urban, with lots of buildings and neighborhoods and not just dirt. What began as farmland is now a sprawling metropolis, and it is no surprise that these formative observations led him to the career he has today.

Brooks grew up in South Phoenix in a public family. His father, the remarkable Dr. George Brooks, Sr., was a well-known preacher, teacher, councilor, activist, and friend to many. Dr. Brooks Sr. set the bar high. Dr. Brooks, Jr. credits his well-educated parents for inspiring him, and continues to embrace his family’s legacy in the South Phoenix community.

Future Video File: “On my street alone… we had all kinds of people from all different levels of life.. South Phoenix was an amazing place!”
~George Brooks, Jr. reflects on growing up in South Phoenix

Dr. Brooks, Jr. gravitated to science and marine biology at a young age, which led him to earn a Ph.D, in National resources, a master’s in marine agriculture, and a bachelor’s from Arizona State University. Throughout high school and college, Dr. Brooks was fascinated by science, a love he credit to his due to his mother, who shared this passion. He now is one of the state’s leading experts on aquaponics and urban farming.

His family’s commitment to the South Phoenix community lives on in Dr. Brooks, Jr.’s devotion and service.

In 2020, Dr. Brooks was featured in The Arizona Republic for his continued innovations in South Phoenix. Click here to read the article by Erin Stone.

Student Researcher: Araya Jordan
Faculty Co-Author: Summer Cherland, Spring 2019

NarratorGeorge Brooks, Jr.
Place of OriginSouth Phoenix, Arizona
Place of ResidenceMetro Phoenix, Arizona
Years Active in South Phoenix1955-
Interview DateApril 25, 2019
LocationSouth Mountain Community Library
Interviewed ByStudent Researcher: Araya Jordan
Story Written ByFaculty Researcher: Summer Cherland
Interview Metadata