Governor Tom Corbett singled out four African-American Pennsylvanians during a Black History Month celebration at the Capitol Tuesday.
Two of the honorees were Rod Doss and Robert Bogle, executives from the Pittsburgh Courier and Philadelphia Tribune.
Referencing an article a black reporter recently wrote about how black and white people tend to avoid each other on the bus, Corbett said the two African-American newspapers are carrying out important work, and trying to bridge racial divides.
“Let’s make sure that in the days to come, even when luncheon isn’t served, that we don’t leave one another alone on that big bus we call Pennsylvania. We can’t get anywhere together if we don’t travel side-by-side.”
Doss said the two African-American newspapers are charged with the same mission.
“Both publications share a credo that goes back to 1827, and the first editorial written by John B. Russwurm, that said, “for too long, others have spoken for us. Today we plead our own cause.”
Corbett said racial tension still exists, and the two papers play an important role, by providing a voice for the black community.
The governor also presented awards to Renee Amoore, who runs a Philadelphia-based health care group, and Fred Clark, who runs a Harrisburg consulting firm.
The Pennsylvania Governors Office has held similar Black History Month celebrations for nine years now.