Lewis was born on this day in Baltimore, Maryland. He received his law degree from Harvard Law School in 1968. He was a partner in Murphy, Thorpe & Lewis, the first Black law firm on Wall Street. In 1989 he became president and CEO of TLC Beatrice International Holding Inc. With TLC's leverage acquisition of Beatrice International Food Company, Lewis became the head of the largest Black-owned business in the United States. TLC Beatrice had revenues of $1.54 billion in 1992.