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From Harlem with Love

An Ivy Leaguer's Inner City Odyssey

Joseph Holland

As a diplomat's son, star athlete, and Harvard Law School graduate, in the early 1980s Joseph Holland had a world of opportunities awaiting him on Wall Street and in corporate America. Instead, Holland moved to the inner city, driven by a divine calling full of unfolding mystery and challenge. He found himself in Harlem during the nadir of its blight and endeavored to contribute to a neighborhood that was tough in every sense of the word.

A Republican among Democrats, a privileged Southern scion among working-class Northerners, Holland earned his stripes as an entrepreneur/activist embracing a vision of personal and community transformation. A five-year sojourn became a three-decade commitment, as his Harlem-based career morphed from practicing law to empowering the homeless, to running small businesses, to writing plays, to serving in politics, to building housing—all aimed at revitalizing a beaten-down, dream-deferred cultural mecca haunted by poignant memories of its glory days in the early twentieth century.

340 pp.  
6" x 9"

Lantern Books


Published:  February 2012


Joseph Holland is a graduate from Harvard Law School and has a master’s degree in history from Cornell University where he followed in his father’s footsteps as an All-American football player. A lawyer, ordained minister, activist, actor, and entrepreneur, he is the author of the critically acclaimed play Cast Me Down and the true-to-life drama Homegrown. He is also the creator of Holistic Hardware: Tools that Build Lives—a book, DVD, and series of workshops that foster life-skills among the homeless. After many years in Harlem, Joseph now lives with his wife and three children in Yonkers, New York. See all books by Joseph Holland

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