Magazine article The Crisis

The 9th Wonder: NAACP's First Hip-Hop Ambassador

Magazine article The Crisis

The 9th Wonder: NAACP's First Hip-Hop Ambassador

Article excerpt

Becoming the first Hip-Hop Ambassador of the NAACP may sound a bit daunting, but for the Grammy Award-winning producer 9th Wonder, it is just one of many hats he wears.

Born Patrick Douthit, the Midway, NC, native virtually created the position within the NAACP's Youth & College Division on a lark. After being approached by a friend to do a mix tape commemorating the NAACP's Centennial, 9th Wonder asked if the organization had a liaison or ambassador for hip-hop. According to Vanessa Anderson, CEO and President of AM PR Group and 9th Wonder's publicist, the opportunity fell into his lap and he jumped on it.

"The mixtape didn't actually come to fruition but 9th is really passionate about helping others through music," says Anderson.

Once he found out that position did not exist, 9th Wonder simply asked if he could become the organization's hip-hop ambassador, seeing it as an opportunity to bring generations together and infuse a new youthful energy into the NAACP. The newly created position is the perfect vehicle to blend the old with the new to create a dialogue that reaches multiple generations, much like his music.

"Young people are very drawn to music and when they meet an artist like 9th, it shows them that they can be cool and be an activist," says Stefanie L. Brown, National Field Director of the NAACP and head of the Youth & College Division. "We really appreciate 9th for wanting to spend his time working with us."

As a history major at North Carolina Central University (NCCU) in Durham, N. …

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