Tuesday, March 6, 2012
Ghanaian-American Derrick Ashong, 36, rose to national prominence the new-fashioned way – via a video that went viral on YouTube. In 2008, when a reporter asked a casually-dressed young black man on the street outside of a Democratic presidential debate in Los Angeles what he thought of then-Sen. Obama's campaign for he White House, he probably didn't expect an articulate, point-by-point analysis. Well, that's what he got - to his visible surprise. (Since removed from YouTube, you can see a clip of it here at 2:26.) The Harvard graduate became a symbol of the youth movement that helped Obama get elected.
Since that moment, Ashong, who is also a musician, has become a radio host, hosting "The Derrick Ashong Experience" on Oprah Winfrey's Sirius XM Radio channel and a TV host on "The Stream" for Al Jazeera English. After returning to Harvard for doctoral studies, Ashong left to focus on his music, his public speaking and media career and his other projects.
Follow him on Twitter @ashong. Click here for his follow up to that original video, and click here to read his blog.