Honoree: Fred T. Joseph
The Grind: Founder, We Share Stories
Find Him: @fredtjoseph
Author (The Black Friend:On Being A Better White Person), marketer, and activist, Fred is clear on where he stands. He wants abolishment not reform of oppressive systems. “I think the distinction is important because reforming systems essentially means negative things happening occasionally, destroying systems gives us the opportunity to make sure negative things don’t happen,” he has said. Creating a world where Black people thrive, not survive, in community and liberation is his goal. “I’ll be honest, this has hurt me as both a marketer and an author. There are many opportunities I don’t get a chance at because I’m often seen as “radical” or “overly opinionated”. But it’s worth it, I don’t need the accolades or the opportunities if I’m a force for good and I know that personally.”
It’s for this reason, perhaps, he started We Have Stories. Constantly encountering talented people with marginalized voices, Fred wanted to not only recognize the disparity in accessibility for creatives of color, he wanted to fix it. He wanted to create opportunities for people to do their best work without having to lose their best self.
Part of embracing his true self, the creative believes in exploring his passions. Writing, film, and music are equally integral parts of his life, oftentimes at the expense of taking a moment to physically rest himself. Diagnosed with MS, Fred acknowledges that while he champions self-care to everyone he encounters, he could stand to follow his own advice, but in the meantime, the championing continues. And we really need a champion.
Click below to see more honorees.