Interview: Judith Jacques on the Future for Black Women in Media
Founder of Black Women In Media, Judith Jacques, created it out of a need to provide a platform for women in media and entertainment.
She started in an internship position outside of school and worked her way up. One of the highlights of her career was forming BLACK STREET, a non-profit that has Black Women In Media, under its umbrella. Judith Jacques sat down with Glitter to talk about how she got started in media, how BWIM was created, the highlight of her career, and how women can get involved with the organization.
GLITTER: Tell us how you got your start in media.
JUDITH: I wasn’t sure what my undergrad focus would be my first year. However, because I already had an events firm with a strong focus in events production and management, I landed an internship with a major PR firm. That internship gave me clarity that I should focus in Communications. After receiving my B.A. in Communications, my firm became an Events & Communications firm.
GLITTER: Why did you create BWIM?
JUDITH: I interned and worked at a lot of firms through my career. They all had one thing on common. I was always the only Black woman in these firms. I shared this alarming fact with other Black media professionals, and they too agreed that this was the norm. It wasn’t as if we weren’t capable of attaining success in media fields, opportunities just weren’t given to us. BWIM was created because of this alarming fact. I wanted to create an opportunity where Black Women In Media and Entertainment careers can have a space to celebrate each other, inspire one another, educate future media mavens, and honor pioneers who’ve paved the way for us.
GLITTER: What has been a highlight of your career?
JUDITH: I would say creating BLACK STREET. The nonprofit organization is the umbrella to its subsidiaries Black Women In Media, Black Culinary Expo, & Black Celebration Awards. They have all allowed me to celebrate the excellence in our community. Each time I were to create an event, guests would approach me and tell me how I’ve changed their lives. There is no greater accomplishment than to be able to inspire someone. No greater accomplishment.
GLITTER: How do you get through difficult times or road blocks?
JUDITH: I’ve faced many. Through time I’ve built a system to effectively bypass obstacles I constantly face. First and foremost, I pray/meditate for clarity. There is this peace and assurance I feel each time. Secondly, I assess the situation from all angles to find that loophole. There is always a loophole. Thirdly, I utilize my resources and network to help overcome each and every one of them.
GLITTER: Outside of the BWIM event, how can women get involved with the organization and stay involved?
JUDITH: We have a membership that allows women to take full advantage of. We are also looking for women to volunteer for our mentorship initiative.
GLITTER: What do you see in the near future for BWIM?
JUDITH: Becoming a global organization which highlights women of color in Media and Entertainment. Also, the organization will become the #1 source for all Black women in media and entertainment to either be informed, highlighted, and/or honored.
GLITTER: What advice would you give to women hoping to break into the media industry?
JUDITH: Work smarter. Not harder. Find a mentor and leverage their experience as a resource for rewarding opportunities. Network across and build relationships with other successful women in your field.
GLITTER: What and who inspires you?
JUDITH: Black women in general. All across the board. It doesn’t matter what field. Our tenacity, strength, and ability to get things done despite the obstacles we continuously face.
GLITTER: What is on your top five playlist?
JUDITH: “Your Spirit”- Tasha Cobbs ft Kierra Sheard
“Ex Factor”- Lauryn Hill
“Tennessee Whiskey”- Chris Stapleton
“Break Every Chain”- Tasha Cobbs
“Love On The Brain”- Rihanna
GLITTER: Favorite places to vacation?
JUDITH: The Caribbean— nothing like it!
GLITTER: Top 5 beauty products?
JUDITH: IMAN Pressed Powder
FENTY liquid foundation
Jaclyn Hill Eye Palette
MAC Finishing Spray
Lip Bar Matte Lipstick
GLITTER: Daily rituals that keep you on point?
JUDITH: Pray/meditation, exercise or dancing, reading, and listening to motivational videos.
GLITTER: What are you reading right now?
JUDITH: Two books: You are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Yourself and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero & The Book of Harlan by Bernice L. McFadden
GLITTER: Favorite places to shop online?
JUDITH: Wish… I know… I know… you’re getting ready to judge me! But it’s so fun!
GLITTER: Top shows you’re tuning into each week?
JUDITH: Anything Sci-Fi and Shonda Rhimes
-How to get Away with Murder
-Game of Thrones
….. I could go on and on and on
GLITTER: Celeb Crush?
JUDITH: Luke James of course!
GLITTER: Glitter has a #SelfLoveCampaign. What’s your definition of self-love?
JUDITH: Unapologetically loving who you are! The good and the “bad.” Learning your true identity and celebrating the beauty in all of you. Finally, consistently finding ways to grow and elevate yourself is true self-love.
This year’s honorees for the Black Women in Media Awards:
Tamika D. Mallory
Michele Thornton Ghee
Stacie NC Grant
Lauren Wesley Wilson
Tanisha Laverne Grant
Codie Elaine Oliver
Dr. Wendy Osefo
Niatia “Lil Mama” Kirkland
To read the FULL interview, make sure to download the latest issue here.