July 6, 2021: In a surprise move, Nikole Hannah-Jones declines UNC’s tenure offer for position at Howard University. “Award-winning journalist @nhannahjones reveals on @CBSThisMorning she has declined the University of North Carolina’s offer for tenure and will be the inaugural Knight Chair in Race and Reporting at @HowardU.”
“Every other chair before me, who also happened to be white, received that position with tenure,” she said. “And so, to be denied it, and to only have that vote occur on the last possible day, at the last possible moment, after threat of legal action, after weeks of protests, after it became a national scandal — it’s just not something that I want anymore.”
Hannah-Jones will lead Howard University’s newly created Center for Journalism and Democracy. This is exciting news as the country grapples with the reality of its historical past and present riddled with racism, discrimination, and hypocrisy. The move is a testimony to the true power of nurturing, growing and empowering our community from within.
We stand on the collective backs of millions of Black minds and Black bodies that traversed the middle passage, enduring dehumanization, Jim Crow, lychings, and massacres across generations.
We are gifted and talented, possessing the innate ability to make incredible progress despite the structural, systemic, and institutional forces designed to limit the progress and pursuits of African Americans going all the way back to 1619.
Bravo to Howard University and Nikole Hannah-Jones for this monumental move!