The Pulitzer Prize-winning creator of the 1619 Project, Nikole Hannah-Jones, has been named as the recipient of the Social Justice Impact Award at the 53rd NAACP Image Awards.
Hannah-Jones is a journalist at The New York Times Magazine and the Knight Chair of Race and Journalism at Howard University.
The 1619 Project reframed the American story through the lens of slavery.
Hannah-Jones made headlines last June when her alma mater, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, announced that she would teach in the Knight Chair position that comes with the expectation of tenure.
Critics of her “1619 Project” complained and UNC doubled back, instead granting her a different role with the option for a tenure review in five years. Her tenure offer, was revoked. Following a public uproar and protests from other faculty members, the UNC again backtracked, offering Hannah-Jones tenure. She declined and accepted a faculty role at Howard University — an HBCU.
“These last few weeks have been very dark. To be treated so shabbily by my alma mater, by a university that has given me so much and which I only sought to give back to, has been deeply painful,” the journalist wrote in a letter explaining her decision to decline the offer.
“The only bright light has been all of the people who spoke up and fought back against the dangerous attack on academic freedom that sought to punish me for the nature of my work, attacks that Black and marginalized faculty face all across the country.”
Hannah-Jones’ project has led to a slew of bill proposals from Conservative lawmakers in at least five states, who are desperate to ban the teaching of critical Race Theory in classrooms across the country.
“This always was a propaganda campaign,” 1619 Project creator Hannah-Jones said on “Reliable Sources,” in December. “It was designed to drive white suburban people to the polls for Republicans and in some degrees, it’s been successful.”
Watch the NAACP Image Awards on Saturday, February 26, 2022, at 8/9c.