Inquire below to book DeRay Mckesson

Black Lives Matter Activist & Host, Pod Save the People

At a Glance

DeRay Mckesson : Biography at a Glance

  • DeRay Mckesson is a leading voice in the Black Lives Matter Movement, and co-founder of Campaign Zero and
  • Host of the wildly popular podcast, Pod Save the People, which focuses on activism and social justice
  • Named as one of the World's Greatest Leaders by Fortune Magazine in 2015 and as one of the 30 Most Important People On The Internet by Time Magazine in 2016 
  • His book, On the Other Side of Freedom: The Case for Hope, offers a new framework for understanding the nature of oppression, and charts a course to dismantle the structures that limit freedom

DeRay Mckesson is an educator, acclaimed civil rights activist, podcaster, and author of the critically-acclaimed memoir, On the Other Side of Freedom: The Case for Hope. He is the co-founder of Campaign Zero and host of the award-winning weekly podcast “Pod Save The People”. DeRay has worked to connect individuals with knowledge and tools to change outcomes while providing citizens and policymakers with commonsense policies that ensure equity. He is a former 6th grade math teacher and Chief of Human Capital of Baltimore City Public Schools, the youngest chief in the history of Baltimore City Public Schools. He has also worked as a leader with the Harlem Children’s Zone and Minneapolis Public Schools.

In 2015, DeRay was named one of Fortune magazine’s World’s 50 Greatest Leaders and one of the 100 Global Thinkers List by Foreign Policy Magazine. He was also awarded the Peter Jennings Award for Civic Leadership and the Howard Zinn Freedom to Write Award. In 2016, President Obama praised DeRay for his “outstanding work” as a community organizer.  That same year, he was named one of the 30 Most Influential People On The Internet by Time Magazine.

A highly sought-after public speaker, DeRay has spoken at colleges, universities, forums, and conferences around the United States and the world and frequently appears on national media outlets including The Daily Show, NPR, MSNBC, and CNN. He has also been highlighted in a range of publications including Vogue, The Advocate, Vanity Fair, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Baltimore Sun.


I cannot think of a more powerful, fitting, and inspirational keynote. The conference would not have been the same without DeRay and his insight on such important and relevant topics.


A common refrain was that DeRay provoked thought in new ways that people will carry with them as they seek to learn more and translate knowledge to action. We look forward to staying connected and exploring ways to partner again.

Walt Disney Television

DeRay’s clarity, passion and candor about everything from policing to education brought us hope and mobilization. He eloquently brought truth to situations that are often viewed as too complex to solve.

The Prosperity Summit

The event was a huge success! We had 500 people in the audience and over 500 views of the live stream! DeRay is an incredibly dynamic speaker and I've only heard positive remarks since the event.

University of Denver

DeRay was fantastic, we really enjoyed having him here! The lecture he gave was so well put together and he is a wonderful speaker.

Kalamazoo College

DeRay was amazing and everyone was so impressed. We’ve had some good speakers and I was told he was the best yet.

Fordham University

DeRay was an incredibly enlightening speaker who offered insightful dialogue and left the audience wanting more!

Penn State College Democrats

He was an absolute dream to work with - could not have been lovelier. His panel was very well attended and received.

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