Dr. Jessie Daniels from the CUNY School of Public Health received the 2015 Public Sociology Award from Communication, Information Technologies, and Media Sociology section of the American Sociological Association.
The Award Committee selected Dr. Daniels for her work on race, gender, sexuality, and new media that has appeared in the journals New Media & Society, Women’s Studies Quarterly, Gender & Society, Theory in Action, American Journal of Public Health, and Health Promotion and Practice. After working in the Internet industry she returned to academia through a large, NIH-funded project at Rikers Island that examined the health impact of incarceration on young men of color. (Rikers Island is New York City’s main jail complex.)
In 2011, a paper she wrote about that project on race, incarceration, and masculinity won the Sarah Mazelis Paper of the Year Award given by the Society of Public Health Education. Returning to social justice work in the academy after working in the Internet industry convinced Daniels that there are ways to combine scholar-activism with digital media. She worked on this in various ways over the last decade. Since 2007, she has maintained a scholarly blog (http://www.RacismReview.com) with Joe R. Feagin (the past president of the American Sociological Association), which regularly gets 200,000 unique visitors per month.
In 2010, Forbes Magazine named her one of “20 Inspiring Women to Follow on Twitter,” and you can find her there at: @JessieNYC. In 2012, she developed JustPublics@365, a multidimensional project funded by the Ford Foundation (2013), intended to open scholarly research to the public sphere and connect it to existing social justice activism. One of the key components of this project is MediaCamp workshops, which offer training for academics in the skills of digital journalism through a unique collaboration between the CUNY Graduate Center Library and the CUNY Journalism School. She has conducted these workshops at the American Sociological Association meetings as well as at other colleges and universities.