P.D. Soros Fellowship for New Americans


Caleb Gayle, 2017

Professor and Senior Fellow, Northeastern University

Caleb Gayle is the child of immigrants from Jamaica

Fellowship awarded to support work towards an MBA/MPP in Business and Public Policy at Harvard University

Caleb Gayle is an award-winning journalist who writes about race and identity. A professor at Northeastern University, he is a fellow at New America, PEN America, Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute of Advanced Studies, and a visiting scholar at New York University. Gayle’s writing has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, The GuardianGuernica, and other publications. He is the author of We Refuse to Forget which tells the extraordinary story of the Creek Nation, a Native tribe that two centuries ago both owned slaves and accepted Black people as full citizens. Gayle is also one of 10 writers launching the Baldwin-Emerson Fellowship capturing the oral histories and artifacts from hundreds of elders from across the country through the support of the Columbia Center for Oral History Research, the Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics, and the Emerson Collective. His nonfiction work has been recognized as part of the Notable Essays Collection of the 2019 Best American Essays. Gayle has also won the Center for Fiction/Susan Kamil Emerging Writer Fellowship, the Truman Scholarship, the Rotary Ambassadorial Fellowship, the Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowship, among others.

Born in New York to Jamaican immigrants, Caleb Gayle remembers a childhood that was defined by his grandfather, a strict but loving reverend who cherished the pursuit of the American Dream and believed there was no excuse for anyone who fell short. It wasn't until Caleb's family moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma, that he began to grapple with systemic racial and economic injustice, an experience that led to his interest in journalism, nonprofits, and government.

Prior to Northeastern, Gayle served as a Lecturer at the Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership at the CUNY-City College of New York, and a Visiting Scholar at the Arthur Carter Journalism Institute at NYU. He also worked as a writer and US News Fellow for the Guardian. Gayle also spent time in management consulting at Boston Consulting Group, a fellow at the think tank, Demos, in philanthropy as a Program Officer at the George Kaiser Family Foundation and venture capital, where he still serves as a Venture Partner at Atento Capital.

  • Caleb Gayle GIF
  • MPP | Harvard University 2019
  • MSc | University of Oxford 2012
  • BA | University of Oklahoma 2011
  • MBA Business, Public Policy | Harvard University
  • REALITY Scholar at the Schusterman Foundation
  • Sheila C. Johnson Leadership Fellowship at the Harvard Center for Public Leadership
  • Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship
  • Truman Scholarship
Work History
  • Northeastern University, Professor and Senior Fellow
  • George Kaiser Family Foundation, Program Officer | December 2013 - July 2016
  • Crea-Mujeres Moviendo Mexico, Technical Adviser | July 2013 - August 2015
  • National Conference on Citizenship, CEO
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