NEW YORK — Hulan Jack, a Harlem politician who in 1953 became Manhattan's first black borough president but was forced from office in a conflict-of-interest scandal, has died of cancer, his family said Sunday. He was 80.
Born on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia in 1905, Jack--who died at St. Luke's Hospital in Manhattan on Friday--was an assemblyman representing Harlem for 10 years before his election as Manhattan borough president.
Jack later attributed his frequent legal problems to racism.
He was convicted in December, 1960, on charges of conflict of interest and conspiracy to obstruct justice and given a one-year suspended sentence.
The case, which earlier had resulted in a hung jury, centered on allegations that a man who was seeking to buy city property financed the renovation of Jack's Manhattan apartment.
Forced to leave the $25,000-a-year post, Jack later ran successfully for his old Assembly seat and returned to Albany.
But in April, 1970, he was one of five people convicted for trying to extort money from Harlem store owners. He was sentenced to three months in prison and fined $5,000, and his political career was at an end.
His daughter, Julienne, said in recent years that he acted as a political consultant.