‘Two Presidents, One Photographer’ on Display at Wilkes University

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. -- Photographs of President Barack Obama and President Ronald Reagan are hanging across the white walls of the Sordoni Art Gallery at Wilkes University.

These photos were taken by Pete Souza, who was the White House photographer during both presidencies. His exhibit has made a stop in Luzerne County and came with a lecture that students say was captivating.

"To hear him talk about living through these situations that you hear about on the news, how often do you get to meet somebody who lived through these different situations with the president?" said Wilkes senior Olivia Caraballo of Kingston.

One situation that stood out to Jim Kennelly of Trucksville was the space shuttle Challenger disaster during Reagan's presidency.

"It was just a terrible day and to see their expressions, you can see how they were dealing with the grief, as well as what was going on," said Kennelly.

People visiting this exhibit at Wilkes University tell Newswatch 16 these photographs show you something you won't see from presidents on a campaign trail.

"They can see that they're human," added Kennelly. "Taking the politics out of the whole thing, that they are human beings that are making difficult decisions and they have to do it quickly because a lot of people's lives depend on it."

Next to each photograph is a note from Souza of the moment he wanted to capture and thought was worth sharing.

"What he does is he shows them behind the scenes, so he shows them what they were like as people and as family man and at the job and when they're not at the job. It's a part of the president that you don't usually imagine," says Caraballo.

These moments in time will be on display and open to the public until December 8 at Wilkes-University.

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