(BWMN)—Dr. Jared Ball, an increasingly important activist in Black radical and Pan-Africanist circles, has
been named a 2022 Freedom Scholar, one of ten selected this year.
The prize—a one-time, no-strings payment of $250,000, awarded individually to all ten scholars—has
been presented to renowned scholars such as Robin D.G. Kelly and many others since the Marguerite
Casey Foundation created the Freedom Scholars award in 2020. Scholars are anonymously chosen by
“It is a surreal contradiction,” Dr. Ball commented exclusively to BWMN via email after the award
announcement. “But to be reminded or made aware of the value my work has to particular peers for
whom I have tremendous respect is humbling, something I cherish, and am honored by. Most of us in
Academia are not disconnected, ivory tower scholars. We are just marginalized, unappreciated, and
under-resourced. So this award is very much appreciated on several levels.”
Ball, the host of “iMiXWHATiLiKE! with Jared Ball” podcast, the flagship program of the Black Power
Media collective, is a professor of Communication and Africana Studies at Morgan State University,
Maryland’s leading HBCU. He is the author of “The Myth and Propaganda of Black Buying Power,” of
which a second expanded edition is forthcoming in the spring.
Ball, a board member of the Black Scholar ournal and a frequent contributor to Black Agenda Report magazine, is a co-founder of Black Power
Media, which has reached 21,000 subscribers since it launched on YouTube in February 2021.
According to Ball’s website, imixwhatilike.org, “Ball’s research interests include the interaction between
colonialism, mass media theory and history, as well as the development of underground journalism and
cultural expression as mechanisms of social movements and political organization.”
As an activist and advocacy journalist, he has been a longtime public champion of radical, independent media and political
prisoners such as writer Mumia Abu-Jamal and Dr. Mutulu Shakur, the alternative-medicine specialist
and godfather of slain hiphop superstar Tupac Shakur.
The other 2022 scholars are: Dr. Davarian L. Baldwin of Trinity College; Noura Erakat, J.D., of Rutgers
University; Dr. Ruth Wilson Gilmore of the City University of New York; Dr. Sarah Haley and Derecka
Purnell, J.D., of Columbia University; Mariame Kaba of Pratt Institute; Dr. Beth E. Richie of the University
of Illinois-Chicago, Dean Spade, J.D. of Seattle University and Olúfémi O. Táíwò of Georgetown
Freedom Scholars “conduct research in cutting-edge areas of scholarship as varied as feminist prison
abolition, global urbanism, alternatives to movement capture, Indigenous erasure and militarized
policing—critical fields of research that are often underfunded,” according to the Casey Foundation’s
Dr. Ball’s award is “proof that principled radicalism and constant work—his 20 years of scholarship,
activism and free, intelligent community broadcasting—always wins,” posted BWMN staffer Todd
Steven Burroughs on social media after the announcement. He is co-editor with Dr. Ball of the anthology
“A Lie of Reinvention: Correcting Manning Marable’s Malcolm X.”