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We Don’t Just Love Black Culture, We Love Black People

We Don’t Just Love Black Culture, We Love Black People

Michele Ghee, EBONY CEO, shares her heart with the Black community. Artwork by Jon Moody

Dear Black Community,

I want to check in on you—the way we know to check in on our beloveds when times have been, well, challenging. What I know for sure is we are built for this moment.

My name is Michele Ghee and I am the new CEO of the most iconic Black Media brands in this nation—EBONY and JET.

A year ago, I didn’t see myself in this remarkable position. I had just closed the door on the disappointment and pain of my corporate journey. In that space I was never allowed—nor did I demand*—what I was worth.  It was painful and humiliating. I felt like I had to check my culture at the door when I got to work everyday. But I no longer have to do that. Through healing, hard work, intention, understanding, forgiveness, family, truth, transparency, and most of all love, I was able to envision something greater for myself.

That’s what I want EBONY and JET to be for you. A new beginning. A home for Black storytellers. An honest reflection of the totality of black lives. I want EBONY and JET to be a place for us to find healing and truth; to elevate our lives , and a place for us to laugh and be free.

We are reminded daily: the world loves black culture. But do they love Black people?

We must keep interrogating a society that will use the bit and parts of a people, but discard the reality of their lives. We no longer have to accept folks loving what we create yet not love the creators. At the new EBONY and JET we will build a community and invite those to love Black culture and Black people.

In 1945, John H. Johnson had a vision for the Black community. One that allowed a more complete reflection of ourselves. Our BOLD perseverance and pride. Our brilliance and beauty. Authentic reporting by, for and about Black people. The New EBONY will pay homage to our powerful past while understanding that we, too, are “history in the making.”

Family, I am writing you to say it’s a new day. Our proud owner Eden Bridgeman and myself are Black women determined to win not only for our families but for your family as well.

On this important and historic journey, we are building a company fueled by technology while tapping into the best creative talent around. Grant us grace as we grow, but watch us work.

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It’s time to claim all that is good! Come with me as we rebuild this platform of Black expression and information. I say this with my whole entire soul—EBONY is here to love Black culture, but our mission is to lift Black lives.

In Love and Truth,

 Michele

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