Dr. Benjamin S. Carson, Sr. Presented Read Along Session With PAL Children In Harlem

April 25, 2024

By NYC PAL

On April 23, 2024, Dr. Benjamin S. Carson, Sr. led an enriching book giveaway and reading session of Why America Matters.

A book that explores foundational values of courage, community and patriotism at the PAL Harlem Center, 441 Manhattan Avenue. PAL children, grades K – 2, participated in the read along designed to foster a love of learning and community spirit.

Carlos Velazquez, PAL Executive Director, welcomed Dr. Carson to a room full of enthusiastic children. Dr. Carson was born in Detroit to a single mother with a 3rd grade education who worked multiple jobs to support their family. He told the children that he was raised to love reading and education and encouraged them to read more books to become better students.  He shared inspiring videos and created an interactive experience for the children as he read from Why America Matters.


“… America is a very special place …”

Dr. Carson shared a message of hope and gratitude. He said, “We should be kind and respect each other, even if we disagree. America is a very special place.  We should be thankful for our freedom, because there are a lot of places in the world where you can’t enjoy our freedom. History is important, because our country gives us our identities, beliefs and strength where we can all work together.”

Dr. Benjamin S. Carson, Sr., M.D., is Founder and Chairman of the American Cornerstone Institute, a new think tank / do tank whose mission is to promote the 4 founding principles which are cornerstones of our country: faith, liberty, community and life as well as pursue common sense solutions that challenge conventional groupthink. He most recently served as the 17th Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.


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For nearly 30 years, Secretary Carson served as Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.  Dr. Carson received dozens of honors and awards in recognition of his achievements including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Spingarn Medal, the highest honor bestowed by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).  He has been awarded over 70 honorary doctorate degrees. Dr. Carson has authored several books, and he and his wife co-founded the Carson Scholars Fund, which recognizes young people of all backgrounds for exceptional academic and humanitarian accomplishments. He graduated from Yale University and earned his M.D. from the University of Michigan Medical School.

New York City’s Police Athletic League

Founded in 1914, New York City’s Police Athletic League is a nonprofit organization that provides recreational, educational, cultural and social activities to 15,000 children and teens annually. For more information, please visit www.palnyc.org.

Photo Caption: Dr. Benjamin S. Carson, Sr. (center) and Carlos Velazquez, PAL Executive Director, (center right) surrounded by PAL children at PAL Harlem Center.

Photo Credit: Jill Nelson Photos

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