Cheryl Thompson-Morton

Posted in 40 under 40 2022, Winter/Spring 2022

Cheryl Thompson-Morton
Cheryl Thompson-Morton, 28
BS business administration ’17


Black media initiative director, Center for Community Media at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism, City University of New York


My Greatest Accomplishment:  The pandemic laid bare so many of the challenges our society faces; that reality led me to the most fruitful period in my life. In 2020, I led a series of conversations with Philadelphia media leaders to develop a collective agenda for more equitable journalism and developed a program that helped leaders of color advance to positions of leadership. In 2021, I published research on the importance of Black media today and also created a space for Black publishers to learn from and support one another. Being able to provide tangible solutions to systemic challenges has made me very proud professionally.

How Drexel Helped Me:  Through the co-op program, I was able to test different career paths and see both what did and didn’t work for me before graduating, which allowed me to start a career post-grad that I knew I was passionate about. Also, because of the fast-paced quarter schedule, I learned how to understand people and their needs quickly and deliver results with short notice.

My Greatest Source of Motivation: This quote motivates me: “There’s no single answer that will solve all of our future problems. There’s no magic bullet. Instead, there are thousands of answers, at least. You can be one of them if you choose to be.” — Octavia Butler

Where I Hope to Be in Five Years:  I hope to be advancing equity, working in a space that allows me to address systemic barriers, specifically at the intersections of race, narrative and poverty. I also want to build spaces where people who are traditionally marginalized belong. I’m open to doing that in a plethora of ways, whether through a professional or entrepreneurial pursuit, volunteering or my interpersonal relationships.

If My Life Were a Music Video, the Song Would Be:  “W.A.Y.S.,” by Jhene Aiko