"DeRay Mckesson is a civil rights activist focused primarily on issues of innovation, equity and
justice. Born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, he graduated from Bowdoin College and holds
an honorary doctorate from The New School.
DeRay has advocated for issues related to children, youth, and families since he was a teen. As
a leading voice in the Black Lives Matter Movement and a co-founder of JoinCampaignZero.org,
MappingPoliceViolence.org and OurStates.org DeRay has worked to connect individuals with
knowledge and tools, and provide citizens and policy makers with commonsense policies to
Spurred by the death of Mike Brown and the subsequent protests in Ferguson, Missouri, and
beyond, DeRay has become a key player in the work to confront the systems and structures
that have led to mass incarceration and police killings of black and other minority populations.
He is also the host of critically acclaimed Pod Save The People, a weekly podcast creating
space for conversation about the most important issues of the week. The podcast is also about
making sure people have the information they need to be thoughtful activists and organizers.
DeRay was named 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."
[Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.]
Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.