WASHINGTON, DC- To commemorate Black History Month, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) today honored former Congressman William H. Gray III in a speech on the Senate floor and through a symposium on Mr. Gray and Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
“For his entire life, Bill Gray has been a minister and shepherd for his congregation, his constituents, historically black colleges, and all Americans in need of a strong voice,” Senator Casey said. “In the Senate today, we express our gratitude for the excellent work of Reverend Bill Gray’s ‘whole ministry,’ a commitment that has touched literally millions of men and women.”
In his floor speech, Senator Casey highlighted Bill Gray’s work at the Bright Hope Baptist Church in Philadelphia, in Congress, with the United Negro College fund and with various other organizations to bring about positive change and to ensure that a future of opportunity is accessible to all youth.
Following his speech on the Senate floor, Senator Casey hosted a symposium to discuss Bill Gray’s contributions to his church, the nation, and education at Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Symposium panelists included:
- Reverend William “Bill” Moore, Pastor at the Tenth Memorial Baptist Church in north Philadelphia. Reverend Moore has served on the staff of former Congressman William H. Gray III and Area Development Director of the United Negro College Fund, Philadelphia office.
- Reverend Kevin R. Johnson, the successor to Bill Gray as Senior Pastor at Bright Hope Baptist Church in Philadelphia. A politically engaged pastor, Dr. Johnson has been an outspoken advocate on a number of socio-political issues such as police brutality, humanitarian support, and HIV/AIDS.
- Alan Kirschner, President of Kirschner and Associates. As the Executive Vice President for Development of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF), Mr. Kirschner worked with Reverend Bill Gray to raise unprecedented amounts of money for the UNCF.
- Congresswoman Maxine Waters, elected in November 2010 to her eleventh term in the House of Representatives with almost 80 percent of the vote in the 35th District of California. An outspoken advocate for people of color, women, children, and the poor, Congresswoman Waters focuses on issues such as poverty, economic development, equal justice under the law.
- Dr. John Silvanus Wilson, Jr., Executive Director of the White House’s initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities