By John McDevitt

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A newspaper pioneer and advocate for journalists of color, Acel Moore, has died at the age of 75. The South Philadelphia native has impacted many lives.

In 1964, Acel Moore was hired at the Philadelphia inquirer as a copy boy. Several years later he became the first black reporter to work for the paper. He later sat on the editorial board. He was awarded Pulitzer Prize in 1977 for his Fairview State Hospital investigation. He retired from the Inquirer in 2005.

Moore is one of the founders of the National Association of Black Journalists and a founding member of the Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists or PABJ, where KYW Newradio’s Community Affairs reporter Cherri Gregg is the current president.

“He is literally the reason that many journalists of color are where they are today,” Gregg said. “His loss is going to be felt for some time, and I know that his loss underscores that we must continue the work of advocating on behalf of journalists of color.”

She said Moore was Moore was a mentor to many.

“He would talk to any journalist, no matter where they were in their careers,” Gregg said, “and treat you with respect, and encourage you and to tell you to work hard and to be excellent in what you do.”

Gregg said the PABJ is working to do something special to honor Moore.

The cause of death has not been released at this time.