Professional Pathways in the Black Digital

Professional Pathways in the Black Digital

Digital tools are being used in a plethora of ways to study and serve the lived experiences and cultures of people across the African continent and Diaspora. These digital tools can include digital mapping, XR technologies (e.g., virtual reality, augmented reality), artificial intelligence (AI), and other emerging technologies. While these tools are increasingly available at universities, many faculty, graduate students, independent researchers, teachers, and activist/community advocates are still working to understand whether or not these tools are of value to their work. This virtual workshop will bring together 5 of speakers who have experience in building Black digital projects, organizing digital humanities centers, using technology to advocate for their communities, and incorporating technology into their teaching and research about Black people. Not only will they share about their research and career trajectories, but they will also answer specific, individual questions in a small group format.

As a bonus, we will also be shipping swag from Michael K. Wilson, a local artist.












Dr. Isis Semaj-Hall is the Riddim Writer. She is a Jamaican-born literary scholar, decolonial feminist, and cultural analyst with a creative practice that is nurtured by sound and enhanced by the digital.  As the Riddim Writer, she creates sound art and hosts the podcast “For Posterity” where she interviews Caribbean writers, musicians, visual artists, and inspiring citizens. As a Caribbean storytelling advocate, she has dubbed poetry and published non-fiction and fiction works. She is also co-founder and editor of the online literary magazine PREE: Caribbean Writing. With a commitment to opening-up access, her cultural analysis and critical scholarship have been published in peer-reviewed academic journals, in non-academic outlets, and can be heard on the 2022 Carnegie Hall produced Afrofuturism podcast.  

She is currently completing her monograph “Storytelling Meets Caribbean Futurism in Infinite Dub,” a critical exploration of word-sound-power, deep listening, environmental wisdom, and Caribbean identities. Dr. Semaj-Hall is the Caribbean literature and popular culture specialist in the Department of Literatures in English at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus in Kingston, Jamaica.










Kimberly Annece Henderson is a writer and curator based in New York City. Her work centers genealogy and Black American lineages through archival photography and historical preservation; which includes her role as Digital Curator at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, in Harlem. Her curatorial work is featured in the 1619 Project book, and her forthcoming picture book, entitled Dear Yesteryear, will be published by Penguin Random House March, 7, 2023.

Headshot of Walid Kilonzi







Walid Kilonzi - A pioneering Extended Reality Producer and a Creative Director with a knack for telling stories, a flair for detail, and a hint of humour. He blends storytelling, the human condition, and Mise-en-scène to share a brand’s message through immersive experiences or stories and get their new clients or rope in new audiences. He has a proven and experienced background in 360 productions, Augmented Reality, Mixed Reality, simulations, 360 animations and VR games for multinational companies, SMEs, African governments and NGOs based all around Africa. He also trains and teaches universities and other institutions about immerse media and XR, from concept to distribution.







Damien McDuffie is a creative technologist, digital archivist, and developer primarily concerned with augmented reality (AR) art experiences. He uses Black family and historic visual archives to make collage art and tell stories of neighborhood histories hidden in plain view. Influenced by Dr. Huey P. Newton’s treatise on  "Technology Question," he developed an augmented reality camera app and platform for Black archives and culture called Black Terminus AR. His mission is to develop and inspire the next generation of Black creative technologists by designing experiences that appeal to them making the AR content creation process as easy as possible.







Faithe J. Day (she/her/they) is a writer, creator, and educator with a B.A. in English and Digital Humanities and a PhD. in Communication Studies. As an Assistant Professor in the Department of Black Studies at the University of California - Santa Barbara, Dr. Day develops creative projects that address 21st-century problems, such as “The Black Living Data Booklet,” a manual and a manifesto on the ethical engagement of data on and for Black communities, as well as collaborations which bring greater awareness to issues of data privacy, ethics, and ownership in developing research and technology, as well as personal and community-based archives. This research also focuses on the role that race, gender, class, and sexuality play in the production and consumption of media, data, and technology.


  • 11:00 - 11:15am - Introduction
  • 11:15am - 1:15pm - Presentations
  • 1:15pm - 2:45pm - Break-Out Discussions
  • 2:45pm - 3:15 - Break Time
  • 3:15 - 4:15pm - Moderated Recap Panel
  • 4:15 - 4:30pm - Closing Remarks

Thursday, April 27, 2023
11:00am - 4:30pm
Loretta C. Duckworth Scholars Studio
Registration has closed.