Imara, whose work has won Emmy and Peabody Awards, is the creator of TransLash Media, a cross-platform journalism, personal storytelling and narrative project, which produces content to shift the current culture of hostility towards transgender people in the US. As part of her work at TransLash, Imara hosts the WEBBY-nominated, TransLash Podcast with Imara Jones as well as the investigative, limited series, The Anti-Trans Hate Machine: A Plot Against Equality. In 2020 Imara was featured on the cover of Time Magazine as part of its New American Revolution special edition. In 2019 she chaired the first-ever UN High Level Meeting on Gender Diversity with over 600 participants. Imara’s work as a host, on-air news analyst, and writer focuses on the full-range of social justice and equity issues. Imara was also the first Journalist-in-Residence at WNYC’s The Greene Space where she hosted the monthly program Lives At Stake. Imara has been featured regularly in The Guardian, The Nation, MSNBC, CNBC, NPR, Mic, and Colorlines. Imara has held economic policy posts in the Clinton White House and communications positions at Viacom. Imara holds degrees from the London School of Economics and Columbia. Imara is a 2021 Nathan Cummings Foundation Fellow and a 2019 Soros Equality Fellow. She was appointed by Mayor Bill de Blasio to serve on the New York City Commission on Gender Equity. She also serves on the boards of the Transgender Law Center, Anti-violence Project, GLSEN, the LGBTQ+ Museum, and the New Pride Agenda. Imara is also part of the Move to End Violence. She goes by the pronouns she/her. Click here for press images.
Imara Jones—whose contributions to media and social justice have won Emmy and Peabody Awards—is a journalist, intersectional-news producer, and creator of TransLash Media, a cross-platform journalism, personal storytelling and narrative effort, which produces content to shift the current culture of hostility towards transgender people in the US. TransLash currently produces videos, documentaries, podcasts, and zines to reach critical audiences. As part of her work at TransLash, Imara hosts the WEBBY-nominated TransLash Podcast with Imara Jones and the investigative, limited series podcast The Anti-Trans Hate Machine: A Plot Against Equality. TransLash works to humanize trans people in order to create empathy and save lives. TransLash was a feature of The Guardian’s coverage of the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising.
She is the former host of Lives At Stake, a series of monthly discussions on issues facing trans and gender non-conforiming communities across the United States, co-produced with WNYC’s The Greene Space where she is the first ever Journalist-in-Residence.
Imara’s views on the intersection of gender identity and racial justice landed her on the front page of Time Magazine in 2020 for her piece “Why Black Trans Women are Essential to Our Future” as part of “The New American Revolution” edition.
Imara is a 2021 Nathan Cummings Foundation Fellow and was a 2019 Soros Equality Fellow. She was featured in Elle as a “woman of color to watch in politics” in 2020 because of her work through TransLash. She is on the boards of the Transgender Law Center, GLSEN, the Anti-Violence Project, and the New Pride Agenda. She is also part of the Move to End Violence.
In the Summer of 2019 Imara chaired the first-ever UN High Level Meeting on Gender Diversity, including LGBTQ+ issues. The gathering of six-hundred people included ambassadors, heads of UN agencies, NGO representatives and activists from around the world.
Imara is also the host and creator of The Last Sip: a weekly, half-hour news show. Launched in 2018, The Last Sip, currently on hiatus, targets Millennials of color, especially women and the LGBTQ community, by focusing on the information needs of those historically marginalized.
Imara’s creation of the The Last Sip and intersectional approach to news was the feature of a story in Forbes magazine. The Last Sip is produced by a team which Imara leads and aired on the independent, non-profit news network FSTV. The Last Sip will return in 2020.
The program received support from the New Venture Fund on a referral from The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Ford Foundation, The New York Women’s Foundation, and VOQAL among others.
Imara was a 2018 Fellow-in-Residence at The New York Women’s Foundation and a VOQAL Fellow alumna.
The breadth of Imara’s work focuses on the full-range of equity and social justice issues from the perspective of America’s emerging majority, specifically people of color, women, and the LGBTQ community.
Imara’s wide-ranging perspective has helped land her as a frequent guest on television and radio programs, including MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes, CNBC’s Closing Bell, PBS’ Democracy Now!, NPR’s All Things Considered, BBC’s World Service, and The Takeaway—a program of The New York Times and WNYC Public Radio.
Additionally her work has been featured in print and online in The Guardian, The Nation, BBC News, Mic, The Grio, Salon, and The Washington Post Company’s The Root.
From 2012-2014 Imara was an economics contributor at Colorlines Magazine where her writing was syndicated in news outlets across the country. In 2015 Imara launched a YouTube channel caffeineTV, a three-minute daily news brief which gave a different take on diverse topics. caffeineTV received nearly a million views.
Prior to her career in journalism, Imara held posts at Viacom where her work on the company’s Know HIV/AIDS campaign garnered two Emmy Awards and a Peabody.
In that role Imara ran a $3 million department and mobilized over $200 million in media value across Viacom’s global assets for the venture, which included MTV, CBS, VH1, BET, Paramount Pictures and CBS Radio. Imara developed the strategic plan for Know HIV/AIDS and was asked by the company’s Chief Operating Officer to manage the campaign. Imara worked with over a half-dozen ad agencies and negotiated international partnerships, such as with the BBC and Kenneth Cole Productions, to expand the footprint of the endeavor. Their creativity attracted key talent to work with the Know HIV/AIDS campaign including Common, Julianne Moore and Ashley Judd. According to the United Nations, “Know HIV/AIDS is the largest public messaging effort in the history of the AIDS epidemic.”
Preceding the Know HIV/AIDS effort, Imara was Manager for Corporate Relations at Viacom from 2000-2002 where she served as the primary spokesperson on technology-related matters. In this role Imara developed a rapid-response operation comprised of lawyers and communications staff to coordinate the company’s public response to new technology that infringed Viacom’s copyrights. The team’s success in highlighting that certain devices, such as the Replay4000, harmed artists more than corporations helped Viacom win key legal battles. At Viacom, Imara also wrote speeches, press releases, performed media briefings and training for executives, and prepared talking points.
Before Viacom, Imara served in the Clinton White House where she held two posts in international economic policy and communications.
Imara, a finalist for the Rhodes Scholarship, received an undergraduate degree in political science and history from Columbia University—where she was student body president—and a master’s degree in Economics from the London School of Economics.
Imara blends her credentials with rich life experiences inspired by an array of the world’s cultures. Imara has traveled to almost two-dozen countries on every continent except Australia and Antarctica. Fluent in Portuguese, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil is Imara’s second home.
Imara currently serves on the boards of the Transgender Law Center, the nation’s largest trans non-profit; the Anti-violence Project, where she is Chair of the Communications Committee; and the LGBTQ+ Museum.
Imara is also an avid consumer of television. Her favorite shows include The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, The Crown, Narcos, She-Ra and many others.
Imara is a trans woman and goes by the pronouns she/her.