#OscarsSoWhite Campaign Still Needed? Yes, Its Creator Says

Jan 11, 2018

April Reign, who started the successful #OscarsSoWhite social media campaign two years ago, speaks Monday at Grand Valley State University.
Credit Courtesy photo

Her name is April Reign. With a single #OscarsSoWhite tweet two years ago this month, she spurred a national conversation about the lack of diversity in Oscar nominations. It's led to greater inclusiveness among the voters in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. But "there's so much more that needs to be done," she tells WMUK's Earlene McMichael on today's WestSouthwest show (listen now, below). Reign speaks Monday in Grand Rapids. 

In the WestSouthwest interview, Reign, a Washington, D.C.-based communications professional and former attorney, discusses the impact of her social media campaign, as well as shares her thoughts on this past Sunday's Golden Globes and the upcoming Academy Awards.

She says we can look for even more reflections from her in an article she's penning for this month's Variety magazine. It is timed to publish when the 2018 Oscar nominations are announced. (The Academy Awards will be televised on March 4 on ABC.)

That Reign is in the spotlight has been a surprise to her.

She tells McMichael that she was just a concerned movie-goer when she fired off her first #OscarsSoWhite tweet in January 2015, and never suspected that her hashtag would trend internationally.

Now she regularly makes presentations about diversity and inclusion, such as the one planned in Michigan next week.

Reign is the MLK Day keynote speaker at 1:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 15 at Grand Valley State University's Fieldhouse Arena in Grand Rapids. 

Note: Click on the icon below to hear the shorter version of the WestSouthwest interview that aired this morning on Morning Edition.

WestSouthwest is a news and public affairs show on WMUK 102.1 FM, the NPR station based at Western Michigan University. It can be heard Mondays and Thursdays at 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.