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Pulitzer Center Update February 26, 2024

Reporting Fellow Stories for Black History Month


This project investigates how race, gender, and nationality impact the reception of artistry in the...

Black History Month Blog 2024
Graphic by Jazmyn Gray. United States, 2024. 

“Black women are a marvel,” our 2022 Spelman College Reporting Fellow Nailah Reine Barnes wrote after attending the 59th annual Venice Biennale to cover Simone Leigh—the first Black woman in the Biennale’s 127-year history to represent the United States—and her project, Loophole of Retreat.

Published in Teen Vogue in October 2023, Barnes’ piece described the 2022 Biennale as a transformative ode to Black women. “Our intellectual and artistic labor merits reception and celebration in every museum, gallery, and international pavilion,” she wrote. “When established institutions do not honor our contributions, we make our own spaces. We carve avenues of self-actualization, self-determination, and community care. We craft Loophole(s) of Retreat.”

Barnes’ project, Souls of Our Nations: The Venice Biennale through a Transnational Black Feminist Lens, is only one of many Reporting Fellow stories and projects to celebrate Black artists, activists, and changemakers—and the lasting impact they have on their communities. As Black History Month draws to a close, we encourage you to join us in reflecting on these relevant reporting projects.

As part of the project Shackled by Stigma: Louisiana-Based Activists Call for the End of HIV-Specific Crime Statutes, 2022 Howard University Reporting Fellow Aquil K. Starks. Jr. covered the people fighting against anti-Black HIV laws. Despite making up only 15% of Louisiana’s population, Black men make up more than 90% of those arrested under the state’s “Intentional Exposure to HIV” statute—one of the most severe HIV laws in the country. Razan Badr, a legislative assistant in Louisiana’s House of Representatives, told Starks that “[t]he laws unfairly target Black men who have sex with men.”

Jermaine Ervin Jr., a 2023 Huston-Tillotson University Reporting Fellow, focused his Pulitzer Center project, Black Education Beyond U.S. Borders, on a nonprofit working to increase Black history education within U.K. public schools.

"It's the affirmation of our young people, right?” Elizabeth Kwaw, head of evaluation and research at The Black Curriculum, said about the nonprofit’s goal of teaching Black history year-round. “They can be anything they want to be.”

Columbia Journalism graduates and 2023 Reporting Fellows Te Shima Brennen and Rajvi Desai spearheaded the project Mother Wit, about a Black trans community’s pursuit of education. Shortly after she was diagnosed with acute kidney failure, Mother LaTravious Collins enrolled in college and founded Brooklyn, New York’s Guiding and Helping Others Survive Transition (GHOST) Project—where she spent the rest of her life supporting her community. 

We’re proud to support these Reporting Fellow projects—and many like them. To continue reading and learning from our stories about racial justice, please make sure to check out our new “Human Rights” focus area.



Despite advancements in HIV/AIDS treatment and awareness, Louisiana's legal framework remains...


This project examines claims about the absence of Black British culture in classrooms.



Mother Wit

Three Black trans women grieve the death of their matriarch and mentor, as they fight to achieve...

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Multiple Authors


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Racial Justice

Racial Justice