Joseph L. Graves Jr. is a professor of biological sciences in the department of biology at North Carolina A&T State University. He is the first African American to receive a PhD in evolutionary biology. Graves was elected a Fellow of the Council of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in 1994. He is an associate director of the Triangle Center for Evolutionary Medicine and has been recently added to the board of the National Center for Science Education, with his term beginning in April 2021. He lives in Greensboro, North Carolina.