My photography is an intimate gesture of composition: an embrace between what the eyes can see and the visual journey of imagination. Though I am the photographer, it is you, the viewer, who makes the choices. On what to focus? What to exclude? You are eavesdropping on a conversation between me and my lens and finding your own way with the work.
Throughout my professional career I have come face to face with the injustices and deprivation that fuel violent crime with tragedy, hopelessness and despair. I believe that detachment and denial are not antidotes. I have a commitment to support citizens of our communities to develop their voices and create their own urban legacy: to tell their own truths – about faith, resilience and community. A critical component of my work is to provide the technology, cameras, instructors and training necessary to endow residents with a multi-media capacity to tell their own stories.
But this is not my only reality. I also embark on a personal journey through my photography to reveal a shared terrain of natural beauty. Photography allows me a vision beyond hopelessness and chaos. A door is closed. A flower is open. There is a path along the river. I invite you to bask in the shadows as well as the illumination. Their juxtaposition in my black and white photography does not exist in order to blur distinctions, but to draw attention to the very nature of things – where we might stand in our differences on common ground. With an intimate gesture of my camera, I invite you to make my journey our own.
We must be of keen sight to disavow our detachments and grasp what is embedded beyond our line of vision. We raise a conch shell to our ear and hear the sirens, the gospel music, the gunshots, and the jump rope slapping the pavement. Like an ocean of storytellers, we sound the discordant jazz notes of our common legacy.
Mr. Thaddeus Miles is currently The Director of Community Services at MassHousing where he is responsible for three impact areas, Housing Stability, Knowledge and Capacity Building and Strengthen Families and Communities for over 500 Housing developments across the commonwealth. His first twenty years at MassHousing Miles held the title of Director of Public Safety and designed and implemented crime prevention strategies affecting several thousand housing units throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Mr. Miles emphasizes strategies that directly engage residents in addressing quality of life issues which he envisions leading to sustainable cities and confronts the complexities of social justice issues.
Mr. Miles credits his international work at Harvard Law School and Community/Urban planning programs at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. These experiences reinforced his steadfast commitment to ensuring that the most underserved members of our cities have genuine opportunities for success and achievement.
Mr. Miles has been involved with many non-profit organizations both as creator and in leadership roles establishing and reinforcing his strong commitment to empowering people and strengthening youth voice, and vision. In the most recent years Thaddeus founded “Think Big Dream Big,” a youth-driven initiative to jumpstart young people on the journey to a positive future, the fulfillment of their goals, and dreams. Additionally, Thaddeus founded HoodFit, a cross-collaborative movement to amplify the positive attributes in community health and wellness. HoodFit started the first ever 5k run through the community of Roxbury, Massachusetts which now, in partnership with the Boston Athletic Association and Dimock Center, hosts over 1000 runners/walkers and a community health fair.
Early in his career Miles, He co-founded MassIMPACT Technology Consortium the Alray Scholarship Fund which provides a second chance scholarship to Boston Public School students and founded the VIP Collaborative- the first in the City of Boston- consisting of 15 community organizations committed to addressing violence and trauma in the community.
Miles is a Veteran of the United States Air Force. In 2017 The Obama Foundation invited Thaddeus Miles to join hundreds of global leaders for their inaugural summit focusing on creative solutions to common problems. Mr. Miles is also an animator and internationally recognized and award- winning photographer, a devoted father, recent grandfather and relished friend.
Boards, Memberships, and Acknowledgements:
The Robert F. Kennedy Action Corp - Embracing the Legacy Award
Boston Celtic's Heros Among Us Award
Federal Bureau of Investigations - The Directors Community Award
The Tenant’s Development Corporation -The Visionary Award
My Brothers Keeper Boston, Co Chair
Becoming a Man, Boston, Chair