About This Episode

Born and raised in New Orleans, Wendell Pierce discovered his passion for acting at a young age. While attending the highly competitive Julliard School in New York City, Pierce fell in love with the diverse range of music, art, and talent he discovered in Brooklyn. Best known for his role as Detective Bunk Moreland on HBO’s The Wire, Pierce has shared the big and small screen with some of Hollywood’s biggest names including Spike Lee, Forrest Whitaker and Jamie Foxx.

But he never forgot his roots. After Hurricane Katrina destroyed his hometown, Pierce began working to restore communities in New Orleans. He founded the Pontchartrain Park Neighborhood Association, a non-profit organization committed to building affordable and environmentally friendly housing throughout Louisiana. He recently opened a series of grocery stores in New Orleans to bring fresh produce and jobs into low income wards. And he's showing no signs of stopping.

Pierce is a Tony nominee as well as a three time NAACP Image Award nominee and a 2008 recipient. He is the host of the Peabody Award winning radio program, Jazz at Lincoln Center, featuring live jazz shows from the Lincoln Center's House of Swing.