Akiba Solomon

Editorial Director
Picture of Akiba Solomon

Akiba Solomon is the Editorial Director of Colorlines. She is an NABJ-Award winning journalist and 2015 Root 100 awardee from West Philadelphia. Online, she has written about culture and the intersection between gender and race for Colorlines, Ebony.com, and Dissent. As Colorlines' inaugural reporting fellow, Solomon reported on reproductive health access for women of color during and immediately after President Barack Obama's re-election campaign. More recently, the Brooklyn-based Howard University graduate wrote Essence magazine's July 2015 cover story featuring Orange is the New Black cast members. In the fall of 2015 she was one of five journalists selected by the Foundation for Middle East Peace to travel to Israel/Palestine to experience the region's difficult political dynamics firsthand and learn about the lives of everyday people. In September 2014, shortly after unarmed Black 18-year-old Michael Brown was slain by White, then-officer Darren Wilson, she was one of few journalists allowed on a Black Lives Matter "freedom ride" from New York City to Ferguson, MO. 

Solomon co-edited Naked: Black Women Bare All About Their Skin, Hair, Hips, Lips, and Other Parts (Perigee, 2005), an anthology of original essays and oral memoirs about Black women and body image. Solomon has also been a researcher for Glamour, a health editor for Essence, and a senior editor for the print versions of Vibe, Vixen, and The Source.

She has also written for a range of print magazines on a freelance basis, including Redbook, Vibe, and Heart & Soul. As a panelist, she has spoken about women’s and social justice issues at a range of institutions including The Schomburg Center for the Research in Black Culture, Stanford University, Yale University, Harvard University, and The University of Chicago.

Check out Akiba Solomon’s media appearances.

Follow Akiba Solomon on Twitter: @akibasolomon

Close-up of Khalid Jabara's face

Khalid Was the 'Fun' Uncle

People around the nation are mourning Khalid Jabara, the Arab-American man slain this month by a racist next-door neighbor with a violent past. Here, his sister in law, Jenna, tells Colorlines about his role in the family and why his parents are not leaving their home. 

Community Mourns #JesseRomero, the 14-Year Old Killed by LAPD for Alleged Graffiti-Writing

Police say the Boyle Heights boy allegedly fired at them while running away. But one witness says the gun went off when Romero tossed it against a fence during the pursuit.

Protester wears a black T-shirt with white writing that says "Ferguson is Everywhere"

Q&A: Marc Lamont Hill on Michael Brown, Imperfect Victims and Getting Past Survival Mode

Two years after the Michael Brown was shot to death by Ferguson officer Darren Wilson, the TV host, professor and writer Marc Lamont Hill shares why he dedicated his latest book, "Nobody," to the 18-year-old, what's changed in Ferguson and why we need to reframe how we see Black women's encounters with police.

Black woman wearing sculptural, African-inspired braid style

Beauty Break: Artist Shani Crowe on Preserving the True Roots of Braids and Cornrows

Here's exactly why Kim K's "boxer braids" and Marc Jacobs' "mini-buns" don't belong in an intelligent conversation.

Minnesota Governor, Mark Dayton, speaks outside the Governor's Mansion about Philando Castile

Minnesota Governor Calls Killing of Philando Castile 'Racism'

Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton actually used the word 'racism' while talking to press about the police killing of the 32-year-old Black motorist.

Black Panther Alumns Pay Tribute to 'Sister, Mentor, Comrade, Leader' Afeni Shakur

"Afeni had a deep and profound love for the community and a passion for the people that made her a dynamic organizer and dedicated activist. ...[Her] organizing laid the seeds for a legacy we still bear witness to today."

Despite the Tubman Hype, Andrew Jackson Will Stay on the $20 Bill

After multiple reports that freedom fighter Harriet Tubman would "replace" president and slave master Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew announced that he'll stay there—just on the back. 

8 Reasons Why I Hated Chris Rock's Oscars Monologue

Opinions about the funnyman's opener ranged from "he told the truth" to "I laughed at parts," to "it sucked." Here are eight reasons why Akiba Solomon wishes it never happened.

Here's How to Get #JUSTICEFORFLINT Even Before Sunday's Big Show

Ryan Coogler's Blackout for Human Rights is throwing a star-studded, free concert on Sunday for Flint, the Black Michigan city poisoned by toxic tap water. Here's how you can watch the show featuring Ava DuVernay, Janelle Monaé and Andra Day—and where you can donate funds right now. 

Fundraiser Friday: Support 'The Enye (ñ) Experience,' a Deep Dive Into Latino Identity

Puerto Rican first-time filmmaker Denise Soler Cox needs your support to complete her touching documentary about Latino assimilation, culture and self-determination.

Behold, the Wackest Office Racism Ever Created

Last week Adweek's Agency Spy blog exposed a racist e-mail written by a Campbell Ewald creative director that got him and the CEO fired. But this isn't just a textbook case of workplace bias. It's a tragic display of poor creative choices.

WATCH: A Big Debate About the Politics of Respectability

The Schomburg Center is hosting—and livestreaming—a debate about respectability politics at 6:30 p.m. ET. Randall Kennedy, a Harvard law professor and a strong defender of this unpopular brand of politics, will mix it up with Brittney Cooper and Mychal Denzel Smith. 

WATCH: Activists In America's Poorest City Fight Gun Violence Like the Preventable Disease It Is

In the debut episode of "The Movement," activist and writer Darnell Moore goes to Camden, N.J., to meet folks who challenge the lie that Black people don't care about violent crime unless it's committed by police.

WATCH: Scores of Women Are Telling Their Personal Abortion Stories to Destroy the Stigma

Advocates for Youth's 1 in 3 Campaign is livestreaming women telling their own abortion stories. Participants also include elected officials, abortion providers, activists and celebrities, and the speakout will be submitted to the Supreme Court as a live brief in a critical case.

The Real Problem With the #BlackGirlMagic Backlash is That You're Missing the Point

Elle.com's provocative piece about why #BlackGirlMagic" is a problem is exactly why Black women won't stop using this ubiquitous term.

'But You Caint Use My Phone' Drops. Erykah Fans Rejoice

Ms. Badu drops her hilarious new mixtape, "But You Caint Use My Phone" via Apple and builds buzz for her upcoming hosting gig at Sunday's Soul Train Awards. 

Colorlines Gets a Makeover!

Long before mainstream media started focusing on race, Colorlines was doing breaking news, investigations, profiles, culture reporting, graphics, essays, comics, videos and even playlists through a multiracial and systemic lens. Today, we're thrilled to present a brighter, cleaner, fresher place for our work.

No. The Victim of the #AssaultAtSpringValley is Not an 'Orphan'

Over the past couple of days, news and social media have reported that the black girl that now-fired Spring Valley High School resource officer Ben Fields attacked on Monday had just lost her mother and grandmother. Her attorney says that's 100 percent false.

Alert: Major Black Panthers Documentary Drops Today

"The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution" drops today in New York City and will later be screened at film fests around the U.S. Here's a clip from the highly anticipated indie documentary.

A Deep Dive Into 'Parenting While Black' in a Post-Freddie Gray Baltimore

Colorlines alumn Carla Murphy talks with moms and dads who say they're struggling to protect their kids from racialized police violence and the street crime they don't trust law enforcement to address.