Radio Personality and Award-winning Journalist
Clay is a New York City-based, radio personality and award-winning journalist. His work covers various topics: pop culture, sexuality, race, religion, social networking and personal branding. Raised in both Washington State and Philadelphia, his diverse racial and socio-economic background has fueled him to consistently deliver edgy commentary, which has garnered a strong following on his social commentary website, ClayCane.net, a 2007 and 2008 Black Weblog Awards nominee.Clay is a graduate from Rutgers University, Phi Beta Kappa, with a B.A. in English and African-American Studies. He is a contributor to numerous print and online publications such as MSNBC’s theGrio.com, The Root (owned by The Washington Post), AOL and The Advocate. He has interviewed various celebrities, including Beyoncé Knowles, Diana Ross, Channing Tatum, Michael Fassbender, Tyler Perry, Denzel Washington, Wes Craven, Hilary Swank, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Janet Jackson, Queen Latifah, Jennifer Hudson, Spike Lee, Jodie Foster, 50 Cent, T.I., Jada Pinkett-Smith, Chris Rock and others.
On the speaking circuit, Clay spoke at Newark's Academy Street Firehouse (an organization for youth who are directly or indirectly affected by HIV/AIDS) on goal settings, the City College of New York on African-American film, New York University (NYU) for their 7th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Week and at the University of Miami in honor of their 50th anniversary of desegregation and the launch of an LGBT studies minor. In addition, he has been a panelist for several events at NYU, ranging from diversity in the work place to LGBT issues. Clay was also a featured panelist at the NABJ (National Association of Black Journalists) 36th Annual Convention.
Clay has provided commentary for television networks such as ABC, TV One and BET (Black Entertainment Television).
Clay is currently the Entertainment Editor for BET.com and a member of New York Film Critics Online and the Broadcast Television Journalists Association. He is also the co-editor and contributing writer of the anthology For Colored Boys Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Still Not Enough: Coming of Age, Coming Out, and Coming Home and a contributing writer to Where Did Our Love Go: Love and Relationships in the African-American Community.
Clay is the host of Clay Cane Live, a weekly call-in radio show on WWRL 1600AM, which also airs the nationally syndicated Ed Schultz and Rev. Al Sharpton shows. Clay Cane Live has been featured by Jet Magazine, The Advocate, GLAAD and MSNBC's theGrio.com.
Sexuality, Religion and the Black Community: Whether the issue is the "down low," HIV/AIDS, or homophobia, Clay offers a unique perspective. Articles on this topic include the controversial September 2010 piece for The Advocate "Eddie Long and the Black Church," a June 2011 article for the Washington Post-owned The Root "Blacks: Having the Most Homophobic Month Ever" and a June 2012 piece "Beyond Same-Sex Marriage" on MSNBC’s theGrio.com Cane delivers an informative but entertaining point of view.
Racial Identity: Coming from a diverse background and a student of African-American Studies, Clay is always been vocal about racial identity. One of Clay’s most popular articles is the March 2011 piece for the Washington Post online magazine, The Root, titled, "Halle Berry and the Resurgence of the Tragic Mulatto," which tackles myths surrounding biracial identity.
Diversity in Media, Arts and the Workplace: As a journalist for LGBT and urban publications, Clay speaks about the importance of diversity. From the speaking circuit to journalism, Clay is an advocate for the marginalized and nameless faces who require diversity to thrive from the workplace to the arts. As he says, "The future of diversity goes beyond mission statements, anniversaries and speeches."
Social Networking and Personal Branding: Clay addresses social networking etiquette and how to effectively use new media to build a personal brand. As a journalist who started as a blogger, and is now the Entertainment Editor at BET.com, Clay offers expertise on building a career, tips on social networking and how to turn a common Facebook and Twitter account into a media vehicle. At the 36th NABJ Annual Convention, Clay was a featured panelist for “Blogging and Beyond."
Pop Culture: As the Entertainment Editor for BET.com and the radio host of Clay Cane Live on WWRL 1600AM, Clay is constantly in the mix of all things entertainment from film to music. Clay talks about the effects of pop culture on American culture, especially for the African-American community. He has interviewed various celebrities: Michael Moore, Vanessa Williams, 50 Cent, Chaka Khan, T.I., Spike Lee, Raven-Symoné, RuPaul, Regina King, Patti LaBelle, Gladys Knight, Donna Summer, Lil' Kim, Audra McDonald and more.
Gender Identity: Clay has extensive experience in the ballroom scene, a LGBT subculture that was popularized in the 1991 documentary Paris Is Burning, which challenged the sometimes-rigid roles of gender. Clay is a former member of the House of Latex, a community project with Gay Men’s Health Crisis, and has a written a fictionalized account on the ballroom scene titled Ball-Shaped World.
Tips for Writers and Journalists: As a professional journalist, Clay offers advice for aspiring writers of all backgrounds. Having written for mainstream, gay and urban publications, he offers tips on how to get published and expand your career.
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