2019 NAMIC Conference: Urban One founder Cathy Hughes receiving humanitarian award

September 4, 2019

by Carla Hay

Cathy Hughes
Cathy Hughes (Photo courtesy of TV One)

The National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC)’s 33rd Annual NAMIC Conference will bring together hundreds of media professionals committed to increasing and celebrating diversity on September 17 and September 18, 2019, at the New York Marriott Marquis in New York City. Invitation-only pre-conference sessions will take place on September 16. Urban One founder/chair Cathy Hughes will receive the Mickey Leland Humanitarian Achievement Award, the event’s highest honor. Hughes will receive her award during the NAMIC Annual Awards Luncheon on September 18.

Urban One, formerly known as Radio One, together with its subsidiaries, is the largest diversified media company that primarily targets black Americans and urban consumers in the United States. The company owns TV One, Cleo TV, and owns or operates 57 broadcast stations in 15 urban markets in the United States. Through its controlling interest in Reach Media Inc., Urban One  operates syndicated programming, including “The Tom Joyner Morning Show,” “Russ Parr Morning Show,” “Rickey Smiley Morning Show,” “Get Up Morning! With Erica Campbell,” “DL Hughley Show,” “Ed Lover Show,” “Willie Moore Jr. Show,” “Nightly Spirit with Darlene McCoy” and “Reverend Al Sharpton Show.” In addition to its radio and television broadcast assets, Urban One owns iOne Digital and the branded content agency One Solution.

Hughes co-founded Radio One in 1980. When the company went public in 1999, she became the first African American woman to head a publicly traded company. She spent most of her early career in urban radio, and she is credited with creating the “Quiet Storm” radio format.

Also at the 2019 NAMIC Conference: On September 17, Michael Esser (Cox Comminications CEO) and Michael Powell (NCTA president/CEO), who are both honorary NAIMC co-chairs, will do an interview session moderated by Cox Communications VP of regulatory affairs Joiava Philpott, who is a NAMIC chair.

In addition, former Republican National Committee chair Michael Steele, who is currently a MSNBC contributing analyst and Brown University faculty fellow, will give the L. Patrick Mellon Mentorship Program Luncheon keynote speech on September 17. Another highlight of the event on September 17 will be the “Cleo Speaks” panel with April Reign (host of Cleo TV’s “Cleo Speaks” and creator of the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag) and TV One/Cleo TV general manager Michelle Rice. And on September 18, the annual Startup Pitch Competition returns, with entrepreneurs pitching their business company ideas to compete for a cash prize. Comcast/NBCUniversal is the presenting sponsor for this year’s Startup Pitch competition.