I am an interdisciplinary and mixed-methods researcher who’s work is centered around examining the relationship between power, media, and identity. My research agenda explores representations of Black women in traditional media spaces and also considers how our engagement with social media technologies has significantly impacted American culture. Currently, I am working on my first book project, tentatively titled, “#TheDarkestShade: Black Women’s Contributions to the Culture Industries,” which explores the ways that the digital labor of Black women has restructured the aesthetic and industrial operations of celebrity culture and the broader entertainment industry. This research also considers how tools of marginalization (e.g., colorism, algorithmic discrimination) impact the digital labor experiences of Black women. Prior to my start at GVSU, I received my PhD in Communication from the Department of Communication and Media at the University of Michigan. I also hold a Masters degree in Communication from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Bachelor of Science degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign.
If you ask me where I’m from, without hesitation, I will proudly tell you Chicago Heights, IL. However, I also spent significant part of my childhood growing up in sunny Los Angeles, CA, with summer stints in Mississippi. All of these places make me who I am but I’m a Midwest girl at heart ❤️. Other fun facts you should know is that I am a former news producer. Currently, I run my own YouTube channel as an independent digital content creator under the name @tlovespeaksss. My channel revolves around natural hair care and other topics important to Black women. With nearly 2,000 subscribers, I have used my YouTube channel to build community, where the diversity of Black women is celebrated.
Most importantly, I believe that Jesus directs my path and it is because of God that I’ve made it this far! I am super excited for all that is to come!