Abby Phillip

CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT AND WEEKEND ANCHOR

Abby Phillip is known for her in-depth reporting. Earlier this year, she was named CNN’s senior political correspondent and the anchor of the network’s weekly show Inside Politics Sunday. She also anchored the CNN Special Report Kamala Harris: Making History, about the vice president’s barrier-breaking career and the childhood experiences that helped shape her. Phillip is writing her first book, The Dream Deferred: Jesse Jackson, Black Political Power, and the Year That Changed America. Scheduled to be released in 2022, it will be the first major contemporary effort on Jackson’s life, his political legacy, and his groundbreaking 1988 run for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Charles McRay Blow

NEW YORK TIMES COLUMNIST, COMMENTATOR AND BLACK NEWS CHANNEL ANCHOR

Blow’s latest book, The Devil You Know: A Black Power Manifesto, was released in January 2021. In it, he argues for a reverse migration of Black people to southern states so that we can build a political majority. Blow has also taken on a new role hosting Prime With Charles M. Blow, a prime-time show on the Black News Channel. The 24/7 news network is dedicated to covering the unique perspectives of Black and Brown communities. Blow’s show offers an enlightening and unapologetic exploration of the critical issues and histories impacting American culture while disrupting the face of the nightly news.

Ebro Darden

MEDIA EXECUTIVE AND RADIO PERSONALITY

Popular radio personality Ebro Darden co-hosts Hot 97’s Ebro in the Morning, one of the highest-rated hip-hop and R&B morning radio shows in the United States. He is known for being a provocateur on the air as well as off. In 2019, Darden was named global editorial head of hip-hop and R&B at Apple Music. In his role, he has introduced and amplified international Black artists from a variety of genres who don’t necessarily have a presence stateside. In 2020, he toured South Africa with a camera crew to spotlight rising artists, including Sjava and Shane Eagle, for a special episode of his series Rap Life, featured across Apple Music’s platforms and YouTube. Darden commissioned various Black musical artists, from country to gospel, to create original music for an Apple Music compilation celebrating Juneteenth.

Nischelle Turner

CO-HOST, ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT AND SECRET CELEBRITY RENOVATION

Nischelle Turner made headlines when she became the first Black woman to co-host Entertainment Tonight. She interviews celebrities and leads the coverage from the red carpet at high-wattage events, such as the Grammys, Golden Globes, and Oscars. Her coverage of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath won the veteran broadcast journalist several awards. As a host and producer of Secret Celebrity Renovation, Turner helps some of the biggest names in sports and entertainment return to their roots and thank the people who’ve had the greatest impact on their lives.

Tamron Hall

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER, TELEVISION HOST AND AUTHOR

Hall is an Emmy Award–winning broadcast journalist and TV show host with more than 25 years of experience. She was a national news correspondent for NBC News, daytime anchor for MSNBC, and host of MSNBC Live With Tamron Hall before becoming the first Black woman to co-anchor Today. She currently hosts Deadline: Crime With Tamron Hall on Investigation Discovery channel. And with her self-titled syndicated daytime talk show, now in its third season, Hall has become a beloved television fixture. She connects with audiences to share impactful stories and have meaningful and heartfelt conversations. Hall was personally devastated by domestic violence when her sister Renate was killed. She created the Tamron ♥ Renate Fund to honor her late sister and support Safe Horizon in helping victims and their families. Hall’s first novel, As The Wicked Watch, is scheduled to be released Oct. 26.

Tomi Adeyemi

NEW YORK TIMES BEST-SELLING AUTHOR

Nigerian-American author Tomi Adeyemi is changing the face of fantasy. Her 2018 debut, Children of Blood and Bone, the first in her West African–inspired Legacy of Orïsha trilogy, landed at No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list and stayed there for 25 weeks. After winning both the Andre Norton Nebula Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and the Hugo Lodestar Award for Best Young Adult Book for her first effort, the 28-year-old Harvard alum’s follow-up, Children of Virtue and Vengeance, also reached the coveted top spot on the New York Times best-seller list. With Lucasfilm working on the film adaptation of Children of Blood and Bone, a recent signing to WME (arguably the biggest agency in Hollywood), and her final novel in the trilogy slated to be released soon, Adeyemi, who made Time’s “100 Most Influential People” and Forbes’ “30 Under 30 in Media” lists last year, is on pace to break even more ground.

Don Lemon

CNN ANCHOR AND AUTHOR

After eight years of holding down various assignments at CNN, Don Lemon reached prime time at the network in 2014. He’s made every moment worth it, with must-see interviews featuring the biggest newsmakers of the day and commentary that not only reflects the pulse of Black America but also serves as a powerful critique of the nation’s conscience. Through an election cycle unlike any other, Lemon has educated and shed light on the inconsistencies, inaccuracies, and downright lies of the Trump administration and presidential campaign. He’s called out hosts at other networks for using racist rhetoric, and often goes viral for his blunt responses to COVID-19 deniers. His on-air “bromance” with fellow anchor Chris Cuomo has spawned a podcast for the cable news channel to “talk politics and get personal.”

W. Kamau Bell

HOST, UNITED SHADES OF AMERICA

As host of CNN’s United Shades of America, W. Kamau Bell goes beyond the headlines, tapping everyday people to explore complex issues such as race and identity. Uniquely built for the assignment, the Emmy winner had long established himself as both an entertainer and activist. In 2020, when the coronavirus pandemic was in its infancy, few politicians were paying attention to working-class Americans—particularly those of color—serving on the front lines: our bus drivers, grocery store cashiers, and home health care attendants, for example. Bell, along with friend Pastor Michael McBride, stepped up to launch Masks for the People, a humanitarian campaign to get critical PPE (personal protective equipment) to them. During his show’s 2021 season, Bell, who sits on the advisory board of the anti-harassment organization Hollaback!, tackled timely topics—such as the state of policing, racism in STEM, the power of protest, and the wealth gap—to offer critical insight into how our nation got to where it is.

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