Mayor Nutter’s Statement on the Passing of U.S. Rep. William Gray III

Philadelphia, July 1, 2013 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter issued the following statement on the passing of former U.S. Rep. William Gray III:




“Bill Gray was a transformative leader among leaders, a man called to the ministry and public service who also called generations of young people to political action and elective office. He knew guys on the corner, and he knew Nelson Mandela and everyone in between. He created a political organization that for decades has continued to be one of the most powerful, productive and progressive forces in the social and political life of our City’s history. He helped make our City great by moving politics and governance from the muck and mire of mere political transactions to principled action, whether in the form of community development, opposition to apartheid or identifying and supporting new leaders.




“As Budget Chairman in the U.S. House of Representatives, Bill Gray utilized his position to influence public policy and federal spending unlike anything we’ve seen in modern times. In the chess match of politics, he knew how to get things done. He could charm you or twist your arm as needed, but it was always in the best interests of the constituents he served.




“I am truly stunned, saddened and hurt by the loss of this great man who was so influential in my own growth as a public servant as well as dozens of other Philadelphians, particularly in the African American community, but Bill Gray was also a unifying force bringing together a multi-racial coalition to work in the best interests of all Philadelphians. Bill’s passing is a dramatic and significant loss for Philadelphia, the Commonwealth and the nation he served with honor and distinction. On behalf of all Philadelphians, I send the City’s deepest condolences to Bill’s wife, Andrea, their three sons and the entire Gray family.”




In honor of U.S. Rep. Bill Gray, the Mayor has ordered that all City flags at all City buildings and facilities will be at half-staff, starting Tuesday.

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Swanson can be reached at 215-686-2521 (office), 215-221-4852 (cell) and

Posted in Mayor's Press Releases, Neighborhoods, Press Release, Topics
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