University at Albany

About Barbara Smith

Barbara Smith

Barbara Smith is an author, activist, and independent scholar who has played a groundbreaking role in opening up a national cultural and political dialogue about the intersections of race, class, sexuality, and gender.  She was among the first to define an African American women's literary tradition and to build Black women's studies and Black feminism in the United States.  She has been politically active in many movements for social justice since the 1960s.

She has edited three major collections about Black women: Conditions: Five, The Black Women's Issue (with Lorraine Bethel, 1979); All the Women Are White, All the Blacks Are Men, But Some of Us Are Brave: Black Women's Studies (with Gloria T. Hull and Patricia Bell Scott, 1982); and Home Girls: A Black Feminist Anthology, 1983.  She is also the co-author with Elly Bulkin and Minnie Bruce Pratt of Yours in Struggle: Three Feminist Perspectives on Anti-Semitism and Racism, 1984.  She is the general editor of The Reader's Companion to U. S. Women's History with Wilma Mankiller, Gwendolyn Mink, Marysa Navarro, and Gloria Steinem, 1998.  A collection of her essays, The Truth That Never Hurts: Writings on Race, Gender, and Freedom was published by Rutgers University Press in 1998.  Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around: Forty Years of Movement Building with Barbara Smith, edited by Alethia Jones and Virginia Eubanks with Barbara Smith was published by SUNY Press in November, 2014.

She was cofounder and publisher until 1995 of Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press, the first U. S. publisher for women of color.  She resides in Albany, New York and served two terms as a member of the Albany Common Council from 2006 to 2013.

Recent Awards

2012 — "Makers: Women Who Make America" AOL—PBS
2010 — Capitaland Quarterly Dozen Who Make a Difference
2009 — Alumnae Association of Mount Holyoke College Achievement Award
2005 — Nobel Peace Prize Nominee
2000 — Church Women United Human Rights Award.
2000 — Essence Magazine, Profiled in lead feature article honoring Black women leaders for the special thirtieth anniversary issue.
1999 — Albany Chapter National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Arts Award.
1998 — The Truth That Never Hurts: Writings on Race, Gender, and Freedom, Honorable Mention, Gustavus Myers Human Rights Book Award.
1996-1997 — Fellow, Bunting Institute of Radcliffe College.
1995-1996 — Scholar-in-Residence, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.
1987 — Mount Holyoke College Alumnae Association Sesquicentennial Award

About Susan Arbetter

Susan Arbetter

Susan Arbetter is the Emmy Award-winning host and producer of the syndicated public radio program the Capitol Pressroom, which broadcasts live from the 3rd floor of the State Capitol in Albany weekdays from 11am to noon. Arbetter also holds the title Director of News & Public Affairs for Syracuse public broadcaster, WCNY. 

The radio interviews Susan has conducted on the Capitol Pressroom have been cited by the New York Times; Washington Post; Wall Street Journal; Newsday; New York Post; Daily News; Buffalo News;Syracuse Post Standard; Times Union, and City and State, among many other publications. Her guests have included leaders in politics, policy, law, and business representing the entire political spectrum. Recent guests include Governor Andrew Cuomo; Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch; Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Comptroller Tom DiNapoli.

Capitol Pressroom can be heard on over 20 NPR & non-commercial public radio stations throughout upstate New York in markets including Buffalo (WNED/WBFO), Rochester (WXXI), Syracuse (WRVO), Binghamton (WSKG) and Albany (WVCR). A digest of the week's best radio segments can be heard every Sunday on WNYC sister station WQXW 90.3 FM in Westchester County. 

Susan is the recipient of over 30 awards for electronic journalism, including a 2013 Emmy Award for Best Public Affairs Series for the television show "Insight" which she produces for WCNY Public Broadcasting each week. She has also received one or more of the following awards for radio broadcasting: Edward R. Murrow, Scripps-Howard, AP, PRNDI & NYSBA, among others. 

Over her career, she has been called a lot of things; some of the nicer ones include: Times Union's Best Local Radio Personality; Berkshire Living's Favorite Voice, and the Women's Press Club's Media Person of the Year.

About Alethia Jones

Alethia Jones

Alethia Jones, Ph.D. is a social justice facilitator who currently serves as director of education and leadership development at 1199SEIU UHE, the nation's largest union for healthcare workers. Formerly assistant professor of public policy and political science at the University at Albany (State University of New York), her research focused on urban politics, immigrant integration, and community banking policies. She received fellowships from MIT, Yale University, University of Virginia and Mount Holyoke College and has taught comparative urban studies in Brazil, Vietnam and South Africa. Her interest in inequality, race and culture began in the 1990s at Columbia University working with government agencies and organizations shaping New York City's policies on immigration, housing, transportation, education, and economic development. Her academic publications include, "Identity Politics: Part of a Reinvigorated Class Politics," (New Labor Forum, Spring 2010) and "Immigration and Institutional Change: The Urban Origins of U.S. Postal Savings Banks," in The City and American Political Development. Ed. Richardson Dillworth. (New York: Routledge, 2009) and Women of Color in the Eighties: A Portrait Based on Census Data." Tamara Jones and Alethia Jones. In Women Transforming Politics: An Alternative Reader. Eds. Cathy Cohen, Kathy Jones and Joan Tronto (New York: NYU Press 1997). She resides in New York City.

About Virginia Eubanks

Alethia Jones

Virginia Eubanks is the author of Digital Dead End: Fighting for Social Justice in the Information Age (MIT Press 2011) and co-editor, with Alethia Jones, of Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around: Forty Years of Movement Building With Barbara Smith (SUNY Press 2014). She is currently at work on a new book about digital surveillance in poor and working-class neighborhoods in the United States.

Eubanks is an associate professor of women's, gender and sexuality studies at the University at Albany, SUNY, and a Ford Academic Fellow at New America in Washington, DC. She writes regularly for The American Prospect and Equal Future and works for economic justice with two organizations, the Popular Technology Workshops and Our Knowledge, Our Power. She lives in Troy, NY and you can follow her at @PopTechWorks.