The first time Danielle Belton and I chatted by phone was in 2017. At the time, I was still working in Miami at Univision when she, Genetta Adams, and The Root approached me to write a three-part series for the website about climate gentrification and its effects on Black, low-income neighborhoods in my hometown.
Obviously, I said yes.
I actually met Danielle in person a few short weeks later when she flew down for a panel discussion I moderated on the topic, and it was then that I knew I had to work with her. I tried to approach her after the event ended and tiptoed around my interest in working at The Root but no dice.
It wasn’t until about a year later that my wish would come true—and, honestly, at times it has truly felt like a fairytale. And that’s largely due in part to DB. But don’t just take it from me.
“My time at The Root so far has been great. And that’s a large part due to the spirit and sense of community and imagination that Danielle has really fostered here,” said staff writer Joe Jurado.
But now the time has come for our “queen-in-chief” (as entertainment writer Tonja Renée Stidhum calls her) to move on to her next adventure at HuffPost where she’ll serve as their editor-in-chief. And though everyone here at The Root is so proud of her and can’t wait to see what she does next, trust me when I say, it’s so hard to say goodbye to Danielle Belton.
Nonetheless, we took a stab at it and shared our thoughts, hopes, and wishes for her on video. Watch as members of The Root’s staff bid farewell to our dearly beloved EIC as she prepares for her next new adventure in media in the video above.
Staff writer Ishena Robinson perfectly captures how so many of us feel about having had the chance to work with Danielle.
“Thank you so much for seeing something in my writing and making my dream of working at The Root come true,” she said. “I am inspired by your drive and how you are so real and accessible amidst your continuing success. Keep setting the bar high!”
We all know DB will.
Until next time.