Wes Moore

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Wes Moore
Wes Moore credit Amunankhra House Ltd.jpg
Born Westley Watende Omari Moore[1]
(1978-12-12) December 12, 1978 (age 36)
Maryland, USA
Nationality United States
Other names Wez
Alma mater Valley Forge Military Academy and College
Johns Hopkins University
University of Oxford
Occupation Social entrepreneur
Public speaker
Youth advocate
Known for National Service

Wes Moore (born august 12, 1978) is an American author, businessman, and U.S. Army veteran. His first book, The Other Wes Moore, was a New York Times  best seller.[2] Currently, he is the host of Beyond Belief on the Oprah Winfrey Network.

Early life and education[edit]

Moore was born in Maryland to father Westley, a journalist and newscaster, and mother Joy, a native of Lowe River, Jamaica. Joy, born to a Cuban mother and Jamaican father, immigrated to New York City when she was 3.[3]

When Wes was 4 years old, he witnessed his father collapse and die of acute epiglottitis. He had gone to the hospital with difficulty breathing, only to be discharged five hours before he died, told he just needed to rest. Moore and his two sisters moved to the Bronx to live with his maternal grandparents.

After failing in private school, Moore attended Valley Forge Military Academy and College in Pennsylvania, graduating as Regimental Commander and class president in 1998.[4] Moore graduated from Johns Hopkins University in 2001. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity (initiated into the Sigma Sigma Chapter).[4] Moore earned a Master of Letters in International Relations from the University of Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar in 2004.[5]


In 2005-06, Moore served with the 1st Brigade of the 82nd Airborne Division in Afghanistan as a U.S. Army paratrooper with the rank of captain. He was involved in managing the American strategic support plan for the Afghan Reconciliation Program. As a White House Fellow (2006–07), Moore was Special Assistant to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.[6] Moore later joined Citigroup in New York, focusing on global technology and alternative investments.

In 2000, as Moore was preparing to attend the University of Oxford in England, he learned of another young man named Wes Moore who was just two years older, lived in the same neighborhood, and was heading to prison for life for the murder of an off-duty Baltimore police officer. He wrote to the other Wes Moore and, much to his surprise, received a reply. Through visits with the other Moore in prison and conversations with the prisoner's family and friends, Moore discovered parallels between their lives.[7] Moore's book, The Other Wes Moore, released in 2010, is based on these interactions. The Other Wes Moore was selected as the "common read" for a number of colleges and cities.[8]

Moore serves on the boards of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA),[9] the Johns Hopkins University, Valley Forge Military Academy and College, and Phi Theta Kappa Foundation.[10] He founded STAND! under the auspices of Johns Hopkins, an organization that works with Baltimore youth involved in the criminal justice system.[11] Moore was a featured speaker at the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, where he addressed the crowd from Invesco Field.[12] He has also spoken at the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) Business Plan Competition, Southern Regional Conference of the National Society of Educators, the education reform session of the third annual Race and Reconciliation in America conference, and the first 9/11 National Day of Service and Remembrance.

Published works[edit]

  • The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates (Spiegel & Grau/Random House, 2010)
  • Discovering Wes Moore (Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 2012)
  • The Work: My Search for a Life That Matters, (Spiegel & Grau, 2014)

Awards and honors[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Moore lives in Baltimore with his wife, Dawn, and their daughter.


  1. ^ Wes Moore (2003). Discovering Wes Moore. Random House. p. 6. 
  2. ^ Cowles, Gregory (May 7, 2010). "Inside the List". The New York Times. 
  3. ^ Wes Moore (2013). Discovering Wes Moore. Random House. p. 7. 
  4. ^ a b Valley Forge Military Academy (2010). Wes Moore '96 / '98C.
  5. ^ 40 Under 40 – Crain's New York Business Rising Stars 2009
  6. ^ Arts and Sciences Magazine Online.
  7. ^ Donahue, Deirdre (May 7, 2010). "'The Other Wes Moore' author knows what might have been". USA Today. 
  8. ^ College Common Reads: Learning From 'Wes Moore' : NPR
  9. ^ IAVA Action
  10. ^ Phi Theta Kappa Foundation Contacts
  11. ^ BMoreNews
  12. ^ "2008 Democratic National Convention Podium Schedule - Day 4". Denver Post. August 27, 2008. Retrieved March 6, 2015. 
  13. ^ "Wes Moore – 2009 40 Under 40 – Crain's New York Business Rising Stars". Crain's New York Business. 
  14. ^ "Nonfiction Book Reviews: 3/8/2010". Publishers Weekly. 2010-03-08. Retrieved 2010-03-14. Moore writes with subtlety and insight about the plight of ghetto youth, viewing it from inside and out; he probes beneath the pathologies to reveal the pressures—poverty, a lack of prospects, the need to respond to violence with greater violence—that propelled the other Wes to his doom. The result is a moving exploration of roads not taken. 

External links[edit]