Warmoth Thomas Gibbs was born in Baldwin, Louisiana, on April 5, 1892. He earned the AB degree from Wiley College in Marshall, Texas, and AB and EdM degrees from Harvard University. During World War I, Gibbs served as a second lieutenant in the United States Army, where his unit, the predominantly black 92nd Division Expeditionary Force, saw battle in France in 1917 and 1918 before returning to the states in 1919.
In 1926, Gibbs moved to Greensboro to serve as head of the military service unit and dean of men at North Carolina A&T College. In 1928, Dr. Gibbs became the dean of the Department of General Services, now the Department of Arts and Sciences. In 1955, he was appointed acting head of A&T, and Dr. Gibbs was officially inaugurated as president of A&T on November 9, 1956.
Under Gibbs’ leadership, the college acquired land to extend the main campus and was admitted to the Southern Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools. The guidance center became a separate department, a placement office was established, and athletics flourished under reorganized coaching staffs. The most notable event during Gibbs’ tenure, however, was the initiation of the sit-in movement by four A&T freshmen on February 1, 1960. As an increasing number of A&T students began to participate in subsequent sit-ins and civil rights demonstrations, Gibbs was involved in numerous discussions with city and state officials, leaders in the African American community, and representatives from organizations promoting civil rights on the local and nation level.
In 1960, Gibbs resigned and was designated President Emeritus. Six years later he authored History of The North Carolina Agricultural and Technical College. Dr. Gibbs died at the age of 101 on April 19, 1993.