Our Vision

The Center for Journalism & Democracy seeks to use the unique and necessary traditions of the Black press to influence and shape American media in ways that advance racial equality and justice, hold power accountable and strengthen U.S. democracy.

Inspired by the Black Press

Located in our nation's capital, at a university chartered by the federal government to educate the formerly enslaved, the Center for Journalism & Democracy seeks to honor and disseminate the traditions of the Black press by training journalists to engage in historically-informed reporting that critiques government and power, is skeptical of nationalism, and works in service of a multiracial democracy.

A New Leader in Investigative Journalism

The Center for Journalism & Democracy will reshape the national conversation around responsible power and democracy through critical, investigative journalism. The Center will support and develop investigative journalists that seek to bring vital conversation about accountability surrounding the challenges facing our nation. Through interdisciplinary collaboration, the Center will help foster the media credibility necessary to strengthen our democracy.

Pushing the Field Towards Pro-Democracy Journalism

Journalism is the firewall of our democracy. When journalism falters in holding power to account and making transparent the way that power is wielded against the vulnerable, then democracy itself falters. With American democracy facing challenges we have not experienced in a century, our profession must create new norms that value truth over neutrality, that challenge power rather than mirror it and that realize a multiracial democracy must be served by a multiracial press.

Our Values

Our four guiding principles embody our values and shape everything we do.

Deeply Rooted, Historically Informed

Championing journalists
and stories that take a holistic, comprehensive and unflinching look at the most pressing issues of our time.

Committed to Black Investment

Focused on developing, supporting and deploying the next generation of Black investigative journalists our programs aim to cultivate journalists whose work will help strengthen our democracy. 

Shifting Civil Discourse

Strengthening media credibility by developing and supporting journalists who push back and challenge mainstream narratives in pursuit of truth and justice, and by fostering the difficult and necessary conversations that bring us closer to the greatest ideals of American journalism. 

Interdisciplinary Collaboration

Collaborating across industries, disciplines and geographies to create comprehensive understandings of the issues and institutions challenging our democracy.