David Johns, executive director of the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for African Americans, will participate in a town hall meeting addressing how African-American men are portrayed in the media. The town hall—“RECLAIM: Changing the Narrative of Black Men in the Media”—will take place on Friday, Sept. 19, at Morehouse College in Atlanta. Johns’ remarks will focus on the importance of changing the narrative on African-American men in the media, particularly as it relates to the relationship between negative perceptions of black boys and men of color, and the barriers they face in the classroom and in life. In addition, Johns will highlight the Initiative’s role in supporting President Obama’s 2020 goal — to once again have the highest proportion of college graduates by the year 2020. He will focus as well on the President’s initiative My Brother’s Keeper, which aims to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color, and to ensure that all young people can reach their full potential. Marc Lamont Hall, journalist, author, activist and a professor at Morehouse College, will moderate the discussion, and TV journalist Jeff Johnson will facilitate it.
Earlier this year, BET launched H.I.S. BET, programming that focuses on and celebrates African American men.