LaMonte grew up in Ohio. He earned his bachelor's degree in history at Harvard College and his master's and doctoral degrees in political science at the University of Chicago. While at Harvard he participated in a service-learning program that brought him to Miles College during the summer of 1964. He returned to Miles in 1965 to work as an assistant to president Lucius Pitts. After that he completed his Ph.D. in political science at the University of Chicago.
LaMonte taught at UAB from 1969 to 1979 and served as the founding director of its Center for Urban Studies. He left to join the staff of Birmingham mayor Richard Arrington Jr in 1979 and remained there until leaving to join the faculty of Birmingham-Southern in 1987. He was named director of the college's Office of International Programs.
LaMonte retired from teaching in April 2009. He was a former board chair for the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute and was the featured speaker at its 2010 Martin Luther King Jr Unity Breakfast, where he described how the balkanization of the region into small municipalities preserves injustice.
LaMonte's wife, Ruth is an Episcopal priest and chair of the Birmingham Sister City Commission. The have four children: Jennie, Brad, Rachel and Matt. The LaMontes have served as ambassadors for Birmingham and for Birmingham-Southern on numerous international trips.
|Superintendent of Birmingham City Schools
Johnny E. Brown
- LaMonte, Edward Shannon (1974) George B. Ward, Birmingham's Urban Statesman: An Essay in Honor of Mervyn H. Sterne. Birmingham: Birmingham Public Library
- LaMonte, Edward Shannon (1995) Politics and Welfare in Birmingham, 1900—1975. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press ISBN 0817307540
- LaMonte, Edward Shannon (2015) Change and Continuity: the Administrations of David Vann and Richard Arrington Jr. Birmingham: Birmingham Public Library Press
- Cole, Pat (Spring 2007) "Professor Edward LaMonte: Teaching BSC students to be politically responsible, globally minded" Southern magazine
- LaMonte's retirement lecture (April 28, 2009) Birmingham-Southern College