Hamilton College Posse alumna Jessica Moulite.
Hamilton College Posse alumna Jessica Moulite.

Hamilton Posse Alumna Wins Ainslie Alumni Achievement Award

Fall 2021 | National

Hamilton College Posse alumna Jessica Moulite was recognized with the 2021 Ainslie Alumni Achievement Award for outstanding leadership this summer. The award comes as Jessica pivots from a successful career in journalism to academic studies as a doctoral candidate in sociology at Howard University.

Named in recognition of Michael Ainslie, Posse’s first board chair, the annual award is given to an outstanding graduate who has made meaningful, far-reaching contributions to their field and community. Jessica was presented with the Ainslie Award in a virtual ceremony this past August as part of the 2021 National Posse Alumni Leadership Conference.

“Posse really is committed to the excellence that it wants to see in the world. And knowing that I'm a part of that legacy—it means everything.”

“I feel very honored,” Jessica says, reflecting on the Ainslie acknowledgement. “It makes me even more grateful to be a part of this organization, because I know that it stands for something. Posse really is committed to the excellence that it wants to see in the world. And knowing that I’m a part of that legacy—it means everything.”

The Miami native graduated from Hamilton College in 2014, majoring in women’s studies and communication as a Gates Millennium Scholar as well as Posse Scholar. Jessica went on to complete a master’s degree at University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, where she received the Annenberg Graduate Fellowship.

Jessica’s Ainslie Award honoree video included recorded message from Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, the subject of just one of her celebrated stories at The Root.

“When I decided I was going to reveal my alopecia diagnosis, I am grateful for my Afro Latina comms director at the time, who immediately thought of Jessica and The Root,” Rep. Pressley shared. “They were the perfect platform and she was the perfect journalist for this very sensitive and vulnerable moment. She became my sister, my confidant, and certainly a very powerful storyteller—and my liberator.”

The Ainslie Award comes with a $10,000 no-strings-attached grant, which will help Jessica make the move from her career as a video journalist with The Root to now full-time doctoral student at Howard University.

“I spent the last number of months truly thinking about injustice, how the media discussed last summer’s racial reckoning and the pandemic, and that understandably affected my storytelling,” Jessica says. “However, I’m currently at a place where I want to go beyond reporting on them and begin working towards the eventual elimination of the systemic roots of social inequality all together. I’m sure my and journalism’s paths will cross again in the future; but right now is my time.”

Watch: Jessica Moulite’s 2021 Ainslie Award Tribute Video