Aspire TV host Jamal Simmons calls the Rev. Howard-John Wesley “inspiring” and “courageous” for addressing tough personal issues in his wide-ranging interview, airing this week on Aspire TV’s The Root 100.
The Alexandria, Va., pastor joins CNN’s Crossfire host Van Jones and LGBT-rights activist Danielle Moodie-Mills in this season’s second episode. “The Progressives” airs Wednesday, Dec. 4, at 8 p.m. ET.
Wesley, Jones and Moodie-Mills are part of a stellar group named to The Root 100's class of 2013 for their influence and achievement. Over the course of four weeks, selected members of The Root 100 will share their aspirations, motivations and challenges.
The Root asked Simmons to characterize the conversations:
“We tried to have really honest conversations and find topics that most people hadn’t heard discussed by black professionals much. We talked about personal struggle and values. Some guests talked about getting comfortable with their sexuality. Some talked about failing, and others talked about their proudest moments. We didn’t want to just celebrate without getting down to the real struggle it took for many of our guests to achieve success. There were times tears came to the eyes of a couple of guests.”
Here’s a preview of this week’s episode: