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Betty Winston Bayé

Journalist, Motivational Speaker, Activist

Betty Winston Bayé is an independent journalist, motivational speaker, and college lecturer. She is an interviewer for the University of Kentucky’s Civil Rights Archives and co-chairs The University of Louisville’s annual Black Family Conference. She earned a master’s degree at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and bachelor’s degree with honors at Hunter College, City University of New York. She was a 1990-91 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University. Simmons College of Kentucky awarded Bayé an honorary doctorate of humanities at its spring 2016 commencement.

After years in the civil rights and black theater movements, Bayé launched her journalism career in 1980 at The Daily Argus in Mount Vernon, NY., where she covered housing, urban affairs, politics and social justice. What followed was a 27-year stint at The Courier-Journal in Louisville, KY, where she was a reporter, assistant editor, editorial writer and columnist. She created and edited The CJ’s blog for young writers. Her own syndicated commentaries about race, politics, social justice, African-American history and the black family drew a loyal audience, many awards and appearances on National Public Radio, PBS’ Newshour and Kentucky Public Broadcasting programs. For eight years, she was executive producer and host of “The Betty Bayé Show” on WYCS-TV in Louisville.

Bayé has authored two books, “The Africans,” a novel, and “Blackbird,” a collection of columns and essays. Her articles and commentaries have been published in various magazines and newspapers, including Essence, The Washington Post and Africans in the Americas, a publication of The Institute for Advanced Journalism Studies and the Trotter Group. She is founder of The Zora Neale Hurston Readers’ Circle and is a contributing editor of BAN, the newsletter published by the Black Alumni Network of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. Betty was inducted into the National Association of Black Journalists’ Hall of Fame in 2013.