Valerie Russ writes about race, identity and neighborhood and economic development.

Latest Stories

Troy Haynes, 19, Del. high school quarterback honored by the Eagles

A four-year starting quarterback for Woodbridge High School in Greenwood, Del., he led his Blue Raiders to state Division II championships as a senior in 2018 and a sophomore in 2016.

'Break up’ Comcast, says congressman as cable giant fights Byron Allen over alleged discrimination

The Democratic congressman from Illinois sent a blistering letter to Comcast CEO Brian Roberts saying its position on Civil Rights Act of 1866 shows it "is an enemy of minority communities."

Philadelphia artist is chosen for the new Dinah Memorial at Stenton

Stenton House included neighbors in deciding how to honor Dinah, a former slave woman who saved the mansion from the British. Philadelphia artist Karyn Olivier was chosen to create the memorial.

Ruth Fleming Hunt, 95, retired teacher, reading specialist in Philly public schools

Ruth Fleming Hunt's family can be traced to one of 14 African American enslaved families at Thomas Jefferson's Monticello.

John J. Cassidy, 92, former president of Teamsters Local 107

Mr. Cassidy was a volunteer at St. Matthew Church on Cottman Avenue and enjoyed spending time at a house he and his family built in the Poconos.

New Jersey NAACP chapter cancels screening of ‘Harriet,’ citing Comcast’s challenge to civil rights act

Comcast will soon appear before the U.S. Supreme Court to argue that an 1866 Civil Rights Act was wrongly interpreted to loosen standards for filing discrimination lawsuits. Advocacy groups say Comcast's petition could be a blow to civil rights.

Thomas Anderson Jr., 83, associate VP of Temple University; chair and cofounder of the George Washington Carver Science Fair

During his 31 years of working at Temple University, Thomas Anderson Jr., 83, was so respected that people called him, "Mr. Temple." He retired from the university in 2004, but continued to work as chair and co-founder of the George Washington Carver Science Fair.

William Richardson Sr., owner of Rose Flower Shop and many other businesses

Mr. Richardson was a life-long entrepreneur who owned many businesses over the years, from fruit and vegetable stores, to ice cream parlors, night clubs and two flower shops.

Princeton Theological Seminary pledges $27 million reparations plan

Despite plans to launch new scholarships, some students and graduates say the seminary has only made a "good start."

Lawyer for Trayvon Martin on his new book about ‘legalized genocide of colored people’

Benjamin Crump will be in Philadelphia Monday to launch his disturbing new book, “Open Season,” in which he makes the case to charge genocide just as activists did in a 1951 petition to the United Nations.