Miki Turner: Award-winning photo-journalist/producer/author & Lecturer at USC's Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism

My NativeAdVantage:  Professor/author/photojournalist/board member


Award-winning photo-journalist/producer /author Miki Turner has been working in the communications industry for more than 29 years, specializing in print, television, radio and new media. Before completing her first book, journey to the woman i’ve come to love, Turner held positions at the NFL Network, Jet magazine, ESPN, MSNBC.com, AOL.com, BET, and several newspapers. Additionally, her work has appeared in Ebony, Essence, Jet, Women’s Sports & Fitness, NCAA, Upscale and Arise magazines. She is currently teaching photojournalism, sports commentary and the history of journalism at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism.

Turner has curated photography exhibitions at USC, in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia and will be one of the featured artists at the Florence Biennale (Italy) in October.

She has lived in Oakland, Calif., Boston, New York, Washington, D.C. and Hampton, Va., was born and reared in Cincinnati, Ohio. She attended Wyoming High School, where she was a marginally talented musician before getting kicked out of band camp; and played basketball, softball, field hockey and ran track. Turner received her B.A. degree in mass media arts from Hampton University and studied photojournalism at Boston University. In 1989, she was selected as one of 16 fellows at the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education at UC-Berkeley.

(with a bunch of kids in Soweto, South Africa)

What do you do best?

I think one of the things I do best is to cultivate talent in other people. That’s why it’s so cool that I’m teaching at the University of Southern California now. I love interacting with our students and seeing them shine. I am also good at connecting people. And I'm also on the board of the Lourdes Foundation and we're working with underserved youth to ensure a brighter future for them.

What makes you the best?

God’s grace and having lived long enough to really get it what it takes to be successful. The most successful people don’t sweat the small stuff and realize it's not about personal accolades. It's about stopping on each floor and picking other people up when you're on an elevator going up.

How will you stay the best?

By continuing to realize what’s really important; and aligning myself with good people who are kind, unselfish and don’t take others for granted. People who get it.

Biggest success?

I think my biggest successes have been motivating people to do things for other people. It’s great when you can send out a mass email asking for help for someone in need and people actually rally and respond. Also, I'm really great at picking the right wine!

What are your aspirations?

Personal: I just want to continue to grow and use my talents to help others realize theirs. And, I’d like to get a Corgi, do more work for Alzheimer’s research and tour every winery in France, Spain, Chile, South Africa and Napa.

Business: I’d like to continue working at USC and with the Lourdes Foundation.  I’d also like to do a few more photography exhibitions.

Most challenging moment?

Trying to make the right decisions when it comes to caring for a parent with moderate Alzheimer’s.

(conducting a photo workshop in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)

What fascinates you?

Conversing with people from other cultures—particularly those who come from disadvantaged situations. Somehow, they are able to rise above it and still smile. Their resolve is inspiring.

Favorite Motto:

Weeping endureth for a night but joy cometh in the morning.

Favorite People:

Too many to mention, but certainly my Hampton University classmates, my BFFs, my students and my LA crew.

Favorite Places:

Africa, London, Paris, Caribbean, Soweto, Oakland, Calif., New York and Toronto.

Favorite Products:

iPhone, iMac, iPad, any red wine with the exception of Cabernet Sauvignon and my jigsaw puzzle app.

Current Passions:

Charity, teaching, photography, wine tasting, happy hour with friends, classic films and collecting watches.




(at my exhibition opening in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)