Detroit native Jemele Hill to release memoir


  • Courtesy photo
  • Jemele Hill.

Jemele Hill — the Detroit native, former ESPN host, Trump critic, and proud Spartan — has inked a book deal.

Henry Holt and Company announced on Tuesday it will publish an as-yet untitled memoir by Hill in 2021. It's the first book authored by Hill, who has had a multimedia career in television, print and digital journalism, and podcasting.

“I’m excited about the opportunity to stretch myself and grow,” Hill said in a statement. “I hope that by sharing some very personal experiences in this memoir – things I’ve never shared publicly before – people will have a better understanding of who I am. I also hope by sharing my story, people realize their circumstances don’t have to dictate their capabilities or contributions.”

Hill drew the national spotlight in 2017 when she noted on Twitter, succinctly, that "Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself [with] other white supremacists." Former White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders swiftly called for ESPN to fire her, and the company suspended her before briefly moving her to a new role at its online vertical The Undefeated, where she wrote about the intersection of sports and race.

Since then, Hill has arguably been vindicated by Trump's own actions and words, such as when he let the crowd at one his rallies chant "Send her back!" in reference to Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar, an African immigrant and naturalized U.S. citizen. Most recently, ESPN host Dan Le Batard criticized the no-politics policy that was enforced by the company after Hill's departure, saying, “There’s a racial division in this country that’s being instigated by the president, and we here at ESPN haven’t had the stomach for that fight.”

In Detroit, Hill was greeted with a hero's welcome. Last year, she was awarded Journalist of the Year at the National Association of Black Journalists' 43rd Annual Convention in Detroit, and the auditorium at her alma mater, Mumford High School, was also renamed in her honor.

Since then, started her own media company with fellow native Detroiter Kelley Carter, Lodge Freeway Media. Earlier this year, she launched a new podcast, Jemele Hill Is Unbothered, and celebrated her engagement with Ian Wallace, a fellow MSU alum, with a party at Detroit's Fisher Mansion.

You can read our 2018 cover story with Hill here.

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