Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Men of Letters

Scholar Cornel West and Phillies pitcher Jamie Moyer address students

Men of Letters

On Monday, I traveled from Camden's Woodrow Wilson High School to the Kimmel Center photographing two men of letters -  both urging young people to "give back."

Scholar Cornel West, the Princeton University Ph.D. and professor of religion and African American studies was keynote speaker at the Camden School District's Male Youth Summit. He told the students, "There's a lot of mess coming at you out there," but challenged his audience to achieve greatness through service to others.

Phillies pitcher Jamie Moyer, the oldest active player in the major leagues, was awarded an honorary doctorate in humane letters by Holy Family University and told the 536 graduates that although they will experience obstacles in life, they must always give back to the community.

Tom Gralish Inquirer Staff Photographer
About this blog

Tom Gralish is a general assignment photographer at The Inquirer, concentrating on local news and self-generated feature photos.

He has been at the paper since 1983, photographing everything from revolution in the Philippines to George W. Bush’s road to the White House to homeless people living on the street right outside his newspaper's front door. For his photo essay on Philadelphia’s homeless, he was awarded both the Pulitzer Prize and the Robert F. Kennedy Award.

His weekly newspaper column, "Scene Through the Lens," takes a look at Philadelphia's urban landscape.

Gralish, along with Inquirer colleague and Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Michael Vitez, spent a year visiting the Philadelphia Museum of Art to capture the stories and photos of "Rocky runners" who come from all over the world to climb the steps - just as Sylvester Stallone did in the Academy Award winning film, Rocky. Their book, Rocky Stories: Tales of Love, Hope and Happiness at America’s Most Famous Steps, was published in November 2006.

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Tom Gralish Inquirer Staff Photographer
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