Dr. Yaba Blay is a professor, producer, and #ProfessionalBlackGirl. Named to The Root 100 (2014), an annual list of top Black influencers, Dr. Blay is one of today’s leading voices on colorism and global skin color politics. Her commentary has been featured on CNN, BET, MSNBC, NPR, Ebony Magazine, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Root, Huffington Post Live, Colorlines, Al Jazeera America and elsewhere. Applauded by O, The Oprah Magazine in May 2016 for her social media activism, Dr. Blay is the creator of a number of campaigns including the LOCS of LOVE care package, the #PrettyPeriod movement, and #PrettyLipsPeriod.
In 2012, she served as a Consulting Producer for CNN Black in America – “Who is Black in America?” – a television documentary inspired by the scope of her book project, (1)ne Drop: Shifting the Lens on Race. In addition to her production work for CNN, Dr. Blay is the executive producer on a transmedia film project focused on the global practice of skin bleaching (with director Terence Nance); and has co-written a feature-length film entitled Black Sunshine (with director Akosua Adoma Owusu). In 2016, she produced a video celebration of #BlackGirlMagic entitled “Professional Black Girl,” and is currently producing a docuseries focused on Black hair culture, entitled “Adventures at Beauty World.”
Dr. Blay received her BA in Psychology (Cum Laude) from Salisbury State University, M.Ed. in Counseling Psychology from the University of New Orleans, and M.A. and Ph.D. in African American Studies from Temple University with a Graduate Certificate in Women’s Studies. She is currently the Dan Blue Endowed Chair in Political Science at North Carolina Central University.