The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) will induct eight new members into its Hall of Fame on December 4 and Monica Roberts (1962-2020) will be among them.
NABJ announced on October 14 that Roberts would be one of two posthumous 2021 inductees to be honored in the virtual awards ceremony this winter. The NABJ Hall of Fame “pays homage to legendary Black journalists and media professionals who have made outstanding contributions to our industry,” said NABJ President Dorothy Tucker. Journalists Tre’vell Anderson and Femi Redwood nominated Roberts.
Roberts was known for her blog TransGriot, recognized multiple times by GLAAD as an outstanding blog. She was, in her own words, “a proud unapologetic Black trans woman,” and her groundbreaking journalism shined a light on injustices faced by Black trans people in particular. Roberts was a long-time member of NABJ and inspired countless journalists. The transgender community mourned her sudden passing at the age of 58 in 2020.
Black trans contributors continue Roberts’s work at TransGriot.com. According to the publication’s website: “We will ensure that the legacy of Monica Roberts the original TransGriot and her pioneering efforts are sustained by chronicling the history of the Trans movement throughout the years (past, present, future); providing accurate media coverage of Trans-related issues – especially surrounding Trans violence and murders; and by maintaining a continual push for change in politics and legislature on a national and international level.”
NABJ also honored Roberts earlier this year by founding the new Monica Roberts LGBTQ+ Task Force Scholarship on March 31. Conceived of by NABJ’s LGBTQ+ Task’s Force’s co-chairs Anderson and Redwood who also nominated Roberts for the Hall of Fame, the scholarship will support “Black LGBTQ+ students studying journalism, mass communications, or otherwise interested in reporting and storytelling.”
Those who wish to donate to the Monica Roberts LGBTQ+ Task Force Scholarship can do so here by selecting “LGBTQ+ Task Force Scholarship” under “Scholarships.”