Civil Rights Photographer Bernie Kleina at City Hall

At city hall, affordable housing advocate, Civil Rights activist and photographer Bernie Kleina spoke about his lifetime of advocacy and photography.

He got his start in photography in 1965, with his involvement in the Civil Rights movement.

Civil Rights Photographer

His presentation comprised entirely of his decades of photography work, including his pictures of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, the Civil Rights movement in Chicago, and the historic Fair Housing March through Marquette park.

“When people think of Dr. King, they think of what he did in the south, integrating lunch counters, freedom rides, on and on…But they don’t think about what he did right here in our city,” said Kleina 

Powerful Photos

After the presentation, Kleina answered questions from the audience, and raffled off some of his pictures for those in attendance.

But he hopes those who left with a photo, took home more than just a still image.

“I hope that those viewing my images will maybe be more courageous. Be more compassionate, and have the courage to do something about it. I don’t want people to think ‘oh those were problems back then, but now everything’s okay.’ And so I show current images to help people understand that the discrimination of yesterday, to a large extent, still remains today,” said Kleina

Kleina also served as the executive director of Hope Fair Housing Center for over 40 years.

Naperville News 17’s Ryan Skryd reports.

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