Gayle King, April Ryan Celebrate Diverse Voices in Political Journalism During White House Correspondents’ Dinner Weekend

White House Correspondents’ Dinner host Roy Wood Jr. made a stop at the second annual Politics & Inclusion Dinner on Friday night in D.C. ahead of his esteemed hosting gig on Saturday night.

Co-hosted by CNN’s Abby Phillip and ColorComm founder and CEO Lauren Wesley Wilson, the event celebrates diverse voices in political journalism, gathering established journalists of color and its rising stars for an intimate, invite-only dinner in the nation’s capital.

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Taking place on the eve of the official correspondents’ dinner, the event featured upwards of 50 guests from across networks, presenting the opportunity to engage in dialogue and build relationships.

CBS Mornings‘ Gayle King, 60 Minutes‘ Cecilia Vega, and D.C. Bureau Chief for TheGrio April Ryan were among the major names in news and media to make an appearance Friday night in D.C., where they doubled as members of the Politics & Inclusion Dinner’s host committee.

April Ryan, Jonathan Capehart, Laura Jarrett
April Ryan, Jonathan Capehart and Laura Jarrett at the Politics & Inclusion Dinner

They were joined during the event by fellow members Jonathan Capehart (The Washington Post, Weekends with Jonathan Capehart); Rachel Scott (ABC News); and more. Other notable guests included ABC News president Kim Godwin, The View‘s Sunny Hostin and NBC News‘ Laura Jarrett.

This marks the second time for several attendees, including Hostin and King — who spoke to the inaugural event last year as a reminder that “you’re standing on the shoulders of people you don’t even know” — to have made an appearance at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner weekend event. Last year, Ana Navarro and Jim Acosta were also among those present.

During the evening, the dinner — which has made mentorship part of its core ethos — served to inspire the next generation of leaders in political journalism. This year, two ColorComm HBCU NextGen Fellows from Howard and Hampton University were invited as part of the evening, where they were introduced to the larger journalism world and supported through onsite mentorship.

Eugene Daniels, Laura Marquez, Sunny Hostin, Jonathan Capehart, Astead Herndon, Abby Phillip, Geoff Bennett, Omar Jimenez, BJ Coleman
Eugene Daniels, Jonathan Capehart, Abby Phillip, Sunny Hostin, Kim Godwin, Geoff Bennett and Omar Jimenez at Friday night’s event

Sponsored by Google, Walmart and Moët Hennessy USA, the evening returned to the Michelin-starred Masseria, kicking off with a private reception featuring signature cocktails by Moët — the “Downtown Abby” and the “L-Dubya-Dubya” — that were named in honor of the dinner’s co-hosts. Guests then dined on a three-course prepared by Masseria’s chef Nick Stefanelli.

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