Vanessa with Angela Bassett at an Essence Black Women in Hollywood event
Basic bio: Vanessa is the Editor in Chief of ZORA magazine, a Medium publication by, for and about women of color. Last month they released the ZORA Canon, a curated compilation of 100 must-read books written by African-American women over the last 160 years.
Beyond the Bio: “I have one kid who’s a sophomore in college, and one who’s a junior in high school, so I don’t feel that tug and pull of guilt about being a working mom the way I used to. It’s still hard to accept that my children are this old, and that I am this old, but I’m powering through it.”
What makes you a grown-ass lady? “I spend little time apologizing for dipping out on invitations to events that I really don’t want to attend anyway. I let my intuition/gut be my guide about what’s worth the time and what isn’t.”
1. On the nightstand: My cholesterol and high blood pressure medications; with my family’s medical history, I need all the help I can get!
2. Can’t stop/won’t stop: Being a champion for women of color; we deserve so much more than what the mainstream thinks of us.
3. Jam of the minute: It’s an oldie but goodie: “Grown Woman” by Beyoncé
4. Thing I miss: Size 4
5. ’80s crush: Prince
6. Current crush: Prince
7. Latest fave find: A pair of leather gloves with fuzzy fur balls that were stuffed into my winter coat from last year — thought I lost them.
8. Last thing you lost: My phone — it was in between the cushions in my couch, so I found it eventually.
9. Best thing that happened recently: Someone said that I’m an elegant lady, and I blushed.
10. Looking forward to: My trip to Nashville in a few weeks — I love discovering a new city, especially one known for good food, good music and good whiskey.