By Kim Glovas

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia’s top cop was honored Friday at a luncheon celebrating Black History Month. The event took place at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children.

The Unity Equals One Gospel Choir set the tone for the luncheon, then Commissioner Richard Ross took the podium. He pointed out the dedication of the city’s police officers.

“This police department, we try very hard to make this a better place for everybody, and sometimes that means doing unconventional things,” said Ross.

Ross is the national spokesperson for “Bigs in Blue,” a Big Brothers-Big Sisters program which pairs officers with “Littles” in elementary schools.

“These police officers that get involved in ‘Bigs in Blue,’ what is not mentioned is that they do this on their own time. They go into these schools, they volunteer, and they cultivate relationships with these young people because they care,” Ross said.