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  • Jeff Chang

Executive Director

As the Executive Director of the Institute for Diversity in the Arts, Jeff Chang is continuing his long career specializing in culture, politics, the arts, and music . 

His first book, Can't Stop Won't Stop, garnered many honors, including the American Book Award and the Asian American Literary Award. He edited the book, Total Chaos: The Art and Aesthetics of Hip-Hop

His new book, Who We Be: The Colorization of America, will be released on St. Martin's Press in October 2014. He is currently at work on two other book projects: Youth (Picador Big Ideas/Small Books series), and a biography of Bruce Lee (Little, Brown).

Jeff has been a USA Ford Fellow in Literature and a winner of the North Star News Prize. He was named by The Utne Reader as one of "50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World". With H. Samy Alim, he was the 2014 winner of the St. Clair Drake Teaching Award at Stanford University.
 
Jeff co-founded CultureStr/ke and ColorLines. He was a Senior Editor/Director at Russell Simmons' 360hiphop.com. He has written for the The Nation, the New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, The Believer, Foreign Policy, and Mother Jones, among many others.

Jeff received a bachelor’s degree from U.C Berkley and a master’s degree in Asian American Studies from the University of California at Los Angeles. In 1993, he co-founded and ran the influential hip-hop indie label, SoleSides, now Quannum Projects, helping launch the careers of DJ Shadow, Blackalicious, Lyrics Born and Lateef the Truth Speaker. He has helped produce over a dozen records, including the “godfathers of gangsta rap”, the Watts Prophets.

Jeff has lectured at dozens of colleges, universities, festivals, and institutions in the U.S. and around the world. He was an organizer of the inaugural National Hip-Hop Political Convention and has served as a board member for several organizations working for change through youth and community organizing, media justice, culture, the arts, and hip-hop activism.

Born of Chinese and Native Hawaiian ancestry, Jeff was raised in Hawai’i where he attended ‘Iolani School. He lives in California. He is a big fan of Japanese curry and poi - but not at the same time.