A "first achiever" in many ways
Arthur Lewis was a trailblazer in many ways. He was the first black professor at the London School of Economics, the first economic advisor to the democratic government of Ghana, and the first president of the Caribbean Development Bank. He also worked for the United Nations, advised and assisted multiple governments, and travelled to the most remote parts of the world. Still, Lewis was known for his modesty and humbleness. Taught at home, he learned more in three months from his father than some students learn during two years at school.
Lewis considered his life to have been relatively normal. "I didn’t live a life as a first this or the first that. It would be a very tiresome way to live." Even after receiving a knighthood, Lewis never rested on his achievements nor his titles, but constantly fought for what he believed in. "I’ve never won an argument by saying, ‘look I’m a knight and you are not’. In my opinion, the only real test for your personal achievement is how far it brought others. Whenever you write or state something, it’s like the opening of a door. Therefore, the effects of publication or of the Nobel Prize must be such that a door is opened through which a lot of people want to go."