Born on the Sea Islands of South Carolina, Franklin and his siblings joined their mother in the 'Fort Apache' section of the South Bronx in 1954. A native Gullah speaker, Franklin says, "my dialect was so rich that I was put into classes with students who only spoke Spanish and the teacher spoke neither." Early on he met life long friends and was "adopted" into a Puerto Rican family (The Ojedas). In the South Bronx, he attended the same junior (P.S. 52) and high schools (Morris) as General Colin Powell. As a collegian at Hampton Institute in v*rginia, Franklin excelled as a baseball player (he won a national batting championship) but more importantly, he found his grounding in academic life. He is a professor of sociology and has been at The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey for nearly 40 years. Early on he chose baseball over acting; then academia and not baseball. Among his principal Television roles are: Boardwalk Empire, Nurse Jackie, Rescue Me, The Wire, Law & Order, Cold Case, and Hack. He is excited about his role in the 20th Century Fox film - 'Won't Back Down' starring Viola Davis and Maggie Gyllenhaal.