This Seat’s Reserved – Behind the Scenes of GPB’s New Show ‘A Seat at the Table’

Logo for GPB's new series "A Seat at the Table"
Image Courtesy of GPB

 

What is it like to be a black woman in America?  How do black women feel about how people perceive their hair; about raising children; about marriage and relationships; and about black men?

“I am not my hair,” are the words spoken so fiercely by the neo-soul singer, India Arie in defense of black women being more than just a hairdo.  Likewise the three co-hosts of this show – Monica Kaufman, Denene Millner, and Christine White – are much more complex than their hair, skin, clothes, and finely manicured nails.  They represent a diverse mix of African American women from various generations, professions, and perspectives.  These three women have teamed up to give a voice to issues affecting not just the African American community but more specifically African American women in GPB’s new show “A Seat at the Table” premiering Sunday, June 18, at 6:30 p.m.

Last Tuesday afternoon, GPB invited a small group of media professionals out to get a sneak peak of the show.  The meeting started with a luncheon that allowed attendees to network with each other and to get to know the show producers better.  

Media professionals meet to discuss GPB's new series "A Seat at the Table."
Local media professionals eating lunch, networking and sharing ideas.

 

Bert Huffman, VP for External Affairs and Chief Development Officer, along with the producers of the show – Keocia Howard and Tiffany Brown Rideaux – entertained questions from the audience about how they chose the co-hosts and how they chose the topics for the show.  They also hinted at some ways to grow and expand the show series beyond public television and into a commercial platform, while maintaining GPB’s commitment to educate, entertain, and inform audiences.

 

Employees of GPB explain the premise for "A Seat at the Table."
Bert Huffman (left), Keocia Howard and Tiffany Brown Rideaux explain the show’s premise.

 

The ladies of ASATT took a break from filming an episode on the topic of “do black men support black women like black women support them” to share with the audience more about the show.  Although these three women are from three different age groups and professional backgrounds, their synergy was as genuine off-screen as it is on-screen.  Audience members asked a variety of questions and the hosts took turns responding to them.  One point that each host emphasized is that this show would allow people to see them express their real feelings about real things that affect them individually as black women in America.  This show “gives voice to what hasn’t been spoken of in public,” says Christine.  Thanks to GPB’s unconventional platform, no topic that these ladies tackle will be too taboo or controversial, and they will reflect an African American woman’s perspective – a perspective that often overlooked or undermined in mainstream media platforms.

 

Monica Kaufman, Denene Millner, and Christine White discuss their new show "A Seat at the Table."
Christine (left), Monica (middle), and Denene (right) speak to the audience about the show.

 

After the question and answer period, the ladies returned to what they do best: entertaining.  The audience was invited to the studio to see firsthand what it is like to watch a live taping.  

 

Inside of GPB studio for a live taping of "A Seat at the Table."
Inside GPB studio for a live taping of “A Seat at the Table.”

 

A seat at the table premieres June Sunday, June 18, at 6:30 p.m on GPB.   To view episodes on the web, visit gpb.org/asatt.


Monica Kaufman Pearson is the first minority woman to anchor the daily evening news in Atlanta, Georgia and currently hosts a three-hour weekly music and talk show on Sunday on KISS 104.1 FM and also does Closeups Interviews for WSBTV.com

Denene Millner is a New York Times best-selling author who has penned 27 books which include Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man co-written with Steve Harvey and Around the Way Girl memoir with Taraji P. Henson; and she is a former columnist for Parenting magazine.

Christine White is a speaker, author, investor and business advisor who currently serves as the Managing Attorney at White Legal Strategy Group, LLC and is the co-founder and President of Influencer Coalition.

 

 

 


 

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