TV One political editor, CNN and Tom Joyner Morning Show analyst Roland Martin will host a new weekly public affairs series on TV One that will focus on issues that are critical to African Americans, through interviews with officials from the Administration, Congress and other policymakers who represent black communities, as well as discussions with journalists and commentators, and a wide range of policy experts.
Each week Roland Martin and a rotating panel of journalists and experts, including American Urban Radio Networks White House Correspondent April Ryan and Comcast Network host and Philadelphia Tribune columnist Robert Traynham, will discuss the top stories in Washington. The show will also feature regular appearances by members of the Congressional Black Caucus. In addition, Martin will conduct a one-on-one interview with a key newsmaker each week.
The hour series, Washington Watch with Roland Martin, is slated to debut Sunday, Sept. 27 and will air weekly at 11 AM and 5 PM ET. TV One President and CEO Johnathan Rodgers and Martin announced the new series at the Essence Music Festival in New Orleans July 4.
“With the election of President Obama, Washington has taken center stage in the hearts and minds of African Americans, and with the many critical issues facing our country, this was the perfect time for us to launch a program to help our viewers understand what impact Washington policy decisions are likely to have on their lives,” said Rodgers. “The positive feedback we received on our coverage of the election of President Obama indicated to us there is a real hunger for information about what’s happening in Washington.
“In addition, since Roland joined the TV One family four years ago, we’ve wanted to find a way a way to have him as a regular, on-air presence on the network, and this new series is a perfect way to take advantage of his talents as an interviewer and analyst, and capitalize on the way he connects with our audience,” Rodgers added.
I am reminded of the founders of the first black newspaper in America, Freedom’s Journal, who wrote in their lead editorial in 1827, ‘We wish to plead our own cause; too long have others spoken for us,’” Martin said. “The same applies today. The voices of African American elected officials, policy makers, analysts and journalists are important, and need to be a part of the discussion on a weekly basis, and on most Sunday mornings shows, they are not.
“Our goal is to also speak to a wide variety of individuals, whether they are Democrat, Republican, liberal, conservative, moderate, independent, African American, Hispanic, white, Asian, Native American, you name it.
“Lastly, this show will be interactive. This is not about us telling our audience what’s important. Our viewers from across the nation will have a chance to share their thoughts and concerns and also drive the agenda on improving the state of Black America,” Martin concluded.
Roland Martin became a commentator for TV One in the spring of 2005 and was named political editor in 2008. He is also an analyst for CNN, a nationally syndicated columnist, a special correspondent for Essence magazine and essence.com, and a senior analyst for the Tom Joyner Morning Show. A former editor of leading African American publications the Chicago Defender, the Houston Defender and the Dallas Weekly, and reporter for the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram and Austin American-Statesman, he has won more than 20 professional awards for journalistic excellence, including the National Association of Black Journalists’ President’s Award in 2008.
Launched in January 2004, TV One (www.tvoneonline.com) serves more than 47 million households, offering a broad range of entertainment, reality and lifestyle -oriented original programming, classic series, movies, and music designed to entertain, inform and inspire a diverse audience of adult African American viewers. TV One’s investors include Radio One [NASDAQ: ROIA and ROIAK; www.radio-one.com], the largest radio company that primarily targets African American and urban listeners; Comcast Corporation [NASDAQ: CMCSA and CMCSK; www.comcast.com], the leading cable television company in the country; The DirecTV Group; Constellation Ventures; Syndicated Communications; and Opportunity Capital Partners.