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Home | MediaMakers | Renee Poussaint
Color: Red
Food: Fried Chicken
Quote: It Is what it is.
Season: Spring
Vacation Destination: Africa
New York, New York
Interview Description:

Biography |

Interview Date: 1/16/2013

Media company chief executive Rene Poussaint was born on [date] in [location?]. In 1964, Poussaint received her B.A. degree in English literature from Sarah Lawrence College; and, in 1970, she graduated with her M.A. degree in African American studies and African literature form the University of California, Los Angeles. Poussaint would also serve as a senior fellow at the Academy of Leadership at University of Maryland, College Park.

In 1970, Poussaint began her career in television broadcasting working as a news correspondent at WBBM-TV in Chicago, Illinois. Between 1990 and 2001, Poussaint worked simultaneously as anchor for CBS and as a news correspondent for ABC, where her stories were featured on “Prime Time Live.” Poussaint has reported from locations around the world including Haiti, South Africa and Uganda. The company's highly-acclaimed documentary, “Tutu and Franklin: A Journey towards Peace,” aired nationally on PBS in 2001, and was filmed at the infamous slave port Goree, Senegal. Her work as a documentary filmmaker has also appeared on Discovery, A&E, and Lifetime.

In 2001, Poussaint and Camille Cosby, educator and producer, founded the National Visionary Leadership Project. The project utilizes various educational media to record, preserve, and distribute the stories and wisdom of older generations of African Americans. The entirety of the NVLP collection is archived at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. as a component of the broader “National Visionary Leadership Project Collection.” In 2004, Poussaint and Cosby co-edited a book titled, A Wealth of Wisdom: Extraordinary African American Elders Speak, which appeared on the New York Times best-seller list. Poussaint is also founder of Wisdom Works, a non-profit documentary production company focusing primarily on social issues.

Poussaint is a recipient of three national Emmy awards for her reporting, writing, and interviewing on ABC’s “Prime Time Live.” As an independent consultant and community activist, Poussaint has worked with with nonprofit and community organizatiosn to help them better define their message for a larger audience. She also continues her local volunteer activities including tutoring, mentoring, and reading newspapers for the blind. Poussaint has received honorary doctorates from Georgetown University and Mount Vernon College.

Renee Poussaint was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on January 17, 2013.

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