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Nikole Hannah-Jones

Black history is American history.

Pulitzer Prize-Winning Creator of The 1619 Project | Executive Producer of the Emmy Award-Winning 1619 Project Hulu Docuseries | MacArthur Genius

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We Must Confront Our History If We Want to Move Forward (1:54)

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We’ve Been Telling the Wrong Story About Our Country (3:20)

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The 1619 Project: Understanding How Slavery Shaped America (4:25)

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How Black Americans Fought for Our Democracy (7:05)

Lavin Exclusive Speaker

“Black Americans have always been foundational to the idea of American freedom,” says Nikole Hannah-Jones. She’s the Pulitzer Prize-winning creator of The 1619 Project—the #1 New York Times bestselling book and 2024 Emmy Award-winning Hulu docuseries—as well as the co-author of the 1619 Project children’s book, Born on the Water.  A MacArthur Genius and one of TIME‘s most influential people in the world, this New York Times Magazine staff writer has spent her career proving that when we understand the history of Black America, we understand the history and the future of all America—which makes us better equipped to fight for racial justice and democracy today.

“[A] groundbreaking compendium . . . This collection is an extraordinary update to an ongoing project of vital truth-telling.”

— Esquire review of The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story

Nikole Hannah-Jones has spent her career investigating racial inequality and injustice, and her reporting has earned her the MacArthur Fellowship, known as the “Genius Grant,” a Peabody Award, two George Polk Awards and the National Magazine Award three times. She is the host and an executive producer of the 1619 Project Hulu docuseries, which won the 2024 Emmy Award for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series.

She also serves as the Knight Chair of Race and Journalism at Howard University, where she founded the Center for Journalism & Democracy. Hannah-Jones is also the co-founder of the Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting, which seeks to increase the number of investigative reporters and editors of color, and in 2022 she opened the 1619 Freedom School, a free, afterschool literacy program in her hometown of Waterloo, Iowa. Hannah-Jones holds a Master of Arts in Mass Communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and earned her BA in History and African-American studies from the University of Notre Dame.


Nikole was awesome! Everyone really enjoyed her honesty and her ability to discuss a tough topic with ease. We had rave reviews about her and the event.

The United Way, Salt Lake City

It was truly a great event and Nikole was fantastic like I knew she would be. Our attendees left awakened and inspired and better educators because of it.

International Literacy Association

Speech Topics

The 1619 ProjectA New Origin Story

In this moderated conversation, Nikole Hannah-Jones engages in a powerful discussion of history, race, and democracy that speaks directly to our current moment. Drawing on ideas from The 1619 Project, she reframes our understanding of American history, highlights the contributions of Black Americans, and illuminates key moments of struggle and resistance. Hannah-Jones explores the legacy of slavery in our cultural, political, and legal institutions, and the way it continues to shape contemporary American life. This is a profoundly revealing vision of our country’s past, present, and future.

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