Help us celebrate local journalism’s inspirational Black journalists

In a year when diversity in local newsrooms (or the lack of it) has never been scrutinised more, Behind Local News wants to celebrate the journalists who are inspiring others to join the industry. Lynda Moyo writes on how you can help:

This list probably comes as no surprise in 2020 — the year of awakening.

It was back in June I wrote about the internal reckoning that’s happening in local journalism — to live up to our responsibility by investing in the widest pool of talent possible to represent and prove our commitment to the communities we serve.

Lynda Moyo

There’s no skirting around the facts — from top to bottom, newsrooms are predominantly and disproportionately white and while that’s not going to change overnight, there’s plenty of strides we can take for longterm good.

Probably the biggest single issue is a lack of non-white leadership and promotion through the ranks. And so today, as Black History Month celebrates Britain’s forgotten and ignored past, we are making it our priority to also look forward and make way for inspiring black and mixed race journalists working in UK local news.

These people are not only proven to be brilliant storytellers, but also important future power houses, top decision makers and influential voices in this industry.

We want to hear the names of the black journalists of any age or gender who you are proud to work alongside and inspired to know.

It might be a bright spark who is just starting out or someone with decades under their belt. Their local coverage could be anything from politics to entertainment. We want to hear your stories of the different ways that you’ve been inspired by the people you put forward for this list.

Local journalism is done in many ways — newspapers, online, TV, radio and everything inbetween. We want to hear about as many people as possible, regardless of the medium they work in.

As someone whose purpose in this industry has ultimately been to challenge, question and change practices, knocking on doors to try and make a difference to the landscape of news publishing, it gives me so much joy to compile this list with your help…

You can add your nominations on this form here — please get involved!

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