Professor HENRY LOUIS GATES, JR. is the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University. Emmy and Peabody Award-winning filmmaker, literary scholar, journalist, cultural critic and institution builder, Professor Gates’s most recent books are Stony the Road: Reconstruction, White Supremacy, and the Rise of Jim Crow and The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song. He has also produced and hosted an array of documentary films. The Black Church (PBS) and Frederick Douglass: In Five Speeches (HBO), which he executive produced, each received Emmy nominations.
In January 2024, Finding Your Roots, Gates’s groundbreaking genealogy and genetics series, returned for its tenth season on PBS. His latest history series for PBS, Gospel, premiered in February 2024.
Professor Gates has received countless awards and honors, including a George Polk Award for his social commentary in The New York Times, a MacArthur Fellowship, the Chicago Tribune Literary Award for lifetime achievement, and the prestigious Gold Medal from the National Institute of Social Sciences, among many others. His filmmaking has received Emmy, Peabody and NAACP Image Awards, as well as an Alfred I. duPont Columbia University Award. Professor Gates serves on the boards of many notable institutions, including: the New York Public Library, the Aspen Institute, the Brookings Institution, and is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations. A consummate scholar and esteemed public intellectual, Professor Gates is a highly sought-after keynote speaker for his riveting addresses to audiences of all kinds.