Style is all about transformation and reinvention.
So it’s fitting that this, our fashion-forward issue, also marks significant change for the magazine you know and love.
Oh, wait. Before we take the sartorial motif a step further, allow me to reintroduce myself: I’m a Chicago native, travel enthusiast and certified Game of Thrones addict who, for the past five years, has worked for almost every angle of this iconic outlet. I entered the proverbial scene as a senior editor for JET’s print magazine before helping usher it into the all-digital era.
After an amazing run at JET, I also took over EBONY.com, expanding our online home in a variety of ways, including the launch of an in-house production studio, a new focus on Blacks in the technology industry (The Upload) and I even brought one of my favorite food historians into the fold to develop a mouth-watering soul food-celebrating series called “Hungry for History.”
Now, I am making another media move as the brand-new EBONY editor-in-chief and senior vice president of digital editorial. I’m running this glossy, gorgeous magazine; EBONY.com; JETmag.com; and our associated media properties, all with the input and collective passion/genius/dedication of an amazing editorial team in Chicago, New York City and Los Angeles.
I don’t know what you would call it, but in my book, that’s an extreme makeover. (Cue some Grace Jones, Beyoncé, Rihanna or whatever transformative tune you prefer.)
I am extremely honored to take my place among a long line of journalists blessed enough to work for a publication that has known since its inception in 1945 that #BlackLivesMatter. Working with our new ownership, this company—now Ebony Media Operations, LLC—is in a state of active, unapologetic and aggressive transformation to make sure that you are getting exactly what you need from us and more, whether it’s through long-form print stories, in-depth photo essays, video, live-streaming talk shows or in-person meetups. Digital diva or nah, I enjoy meeting folks in person. Facebook walls and Snapchats only take you so far.
We are about to take this Black magic to the next level, and I am excited to be along for the ride. And you’re riding shotgun, so I sincerely invite you to communicate with me through whichever medium suits your fancy. Let me know in no uncertain terms how you feel about what we are delivering to—and about—our community, from Detroit to the Diaspora.
With no further ado, please go ahead and thumb through and let me know what you think of our coverage, most notably our cover star, Alicia Keys (p. 84). The singer and activist has undergone an artistic and personal evolution of her own, as you’ll learn from Senior Style & Culture Editor Ericka N. Goodman, who not only talked to the singing star but joined her for a night at the theater so we could bring you an intimate and unique look into her life.
Keys is also draped in the finest of fashions, which sets the stage nicely for a plethora of couture coverage, then we hit our crescendo with the 2016 EBONY Beauty and Grooming Awards (p. 45) Make careful note of the winners—aka experts at beautifying brown skin, hair and nails—because if you don’t look good, we don’t look good.
Also on tap: I’m a big fan of humor, so we are delighted to present you with LOL overlord Luvvie Ajayi, Awesomely Luvvie, regaling us with the background on her new book, I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual.
There’s so much to enjoy in this issue and I don’t want to delay you for another second, so we’ll just see each other next time. In the meantime and in-between time, don’t forget to reach out and drop me a line or two anywhere in the social stratosphere. I’ll be looking out. You can also check me out on EBONY.com.