September 11, 2015

Moore to deliver Distinguished Speaker Series lecture

by Christi Mathis

Wes MooreCARBONDALE, Ill. -- Author, businessman, television personality and U.S. Army veteran Wes Moore will share his inspirational story at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. 

Moore, the author of “The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates,” “The Work: My Search for a Life that Matters,” and “Forcefully Advancing” will deliver the Distinguished Speaker Series lecture at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 23 in the Student Center Ballrooms. His presentation is free and open to the public. 

SIU President Randy Dunn noted that the Distinguished Speaker Series is designed to enhance the academic experience for students and further engage the community in the life of the university. 

“With his impressive background in the military and in the public and private sectors, Wes Moore offers valuable insights about leadership and responsibility,” Dunn said. “In addition, as the founder of BridgeEdU, he is an influential advocate of college completion.” 

“The Other Wes Moore” is the divergent story of two children with the same name who grew up in the same city but chose very different paths. One served in the 82nd Airborne Division, was a Rhodes Scholar and White House Fellow to former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. He was a man who relied on his faith, even in combat. 

The other is serving a life sentence in prison for the death of a police officer during an armed robbery. Author Wes Moore’s book became a New York Times and Wall Street Journal best-seller that explores the line between success and failure in communities. 

Moore has appeared in a wide variety of print and electronic media including USA Today, Meet the Press and NPR and is the host of “Beyond Belief” on the Oprah Winfrey Network. He has spoken to audiences far and wide and is the executive producer and host of the PBS show “Coming Back with Wes Moore,” focusing on veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan as they return to the United States. 

His second book, “The Work,” includes the stories of people who taught him real-life lessons along his journeys, including an Afghan translator who showed him how to find spirit even in war, his grandfather who taught how serving can save, and students who showed great courage in the face of adversity in Mississippi in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. 

As a John Hopkins University student he founded STAND!, an organization that works with youths in the Baltimore criminal justice system and more recently, he founded BridgeEdU. He is the CEO of the organization, which works to provide a college experience for students that includes internships, service-learning opportunities and core academic classes in an effort designed to engage students and encourage them to complete college and successfully move on to careers. 

Moore’s speech at SIU carries the same name as his first book. He believes that being a leader, whether in your own life or in the world of business, hinges on personal responsibility. He will explain how people who hold themselves accountable for their choices are transformational leaders who create a vision and inspire and empower others to make it happen. He will share personal experiences from his time in the military as well as his leadership within the public and private sectors. 

“I look forward to talking at Southern Illinois University Carbondale about how our personal journeys can lead us to what we are most passionate about,” Moore said. “Our most fulfilling work happens when we serve others, at the intersection between our gifts and our troubled world. That is where we find the work that lasts.” 

Sponsors of Moore’s visit include the Office of the Chancellor, the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute, the SIU Foundation, the Student Center, and the Student Programming Council. 

Additional information about Moore is available online at, at IAmWesMoore on Facebook or on Twitter at @wesmoore1.