Brit Harley

Community Engagement Reporter

Brit Harley is a creative strategist, movement builder and youth organizer committed to creating impactful experiences to inspire and create change. As a creative strategist, Brit collaborates with artists, entrepreneurs, and community members to design experiences and launch products and projects into the world. 


Brit prides herself in forging relationships and fostering community to build movements and organizations bigger than their leaders. She has spearheaded transformational work with community organizations Them Cloud Kids and Girls on Bikes. In 2018, she launched Book-A-Youngin, an organization that enrolls mentors for young people and activates local economies to provide paid learning opportunities in alignment with their personal passions. 


A native of Newark, Brit is actively engaged in her community. She collaborates with school leaders to develop and design school-based programming for young people with a focus on self-development and thriving. She has supported programming and engagement in 10+ schools, including Malcolm X Shabazz High School.


Brit joined WBGO’s news team in July 2019 as the News Voices Fellow to increase community access and engagement with the newsroom. Currently, as the Community Engagement Reporter, Brit ensures Newark residents perspectives, experiences, and expertise are better reflected in news coverage of the city.

Ways to Connect

Pamela Booker / Where's Your Tree

Structural racism has shaped America’s agricultural landscape. 14% of all farm owner-operators were Black Americans in 1910. By 2012, 1.5%. From 2012 to 2014, white Americans generated 98% of all farm related income from land ownership. Pamela Booker is connecting the community with local black and brown urban farmers and amplifying conversations about urban ecosystems.


The City of Newark, Newark 2020, Audible and Newark Public Library have partnered to launch the Hire Newark Book Club, a professional reading and accountability group moderated by Newark 2020’s high-performance career coaches designed to help members learn new skills, find new ideas, and experience paradigm shifts.  The book club is free and open to all city residents interested in joining a community where they can learn from one another through professional life and career coaches. 

Clinton Hill Community Action/Greater Newark LISC

As food distribution lines continue to grow by the week, communities across the country are working with their neighbors to support one another. Here in Newark, NJ – Clinton Hill is one of those neighborhoods. At the onset of the pandemic, while traditional food pantries were closed, the Clinton Hill COVID-19 Community Action team would come together and work in partnership with residents to organize immediate relief efforts for Clinton Hill.

James Frazier

For the past year, WBGO has committed to incubating a community storytelling space for Newark residents. In the coming months, we will work in partnership with Newarkers to fill critical information gaps. With the generous support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation and Victoria Foundation, we are able to provide stipends and training for city residents as resident-reporters.

Eyes Like Mine /

Krystle Allen, a Newark native, founded Eyes Like Mine Incorporated, a nonprofit organization established in March of 2014. The organization was founded with the help of Naquela Wright and Ihsaan R. Muhammad Esq., to introduce a unique pattern of advocacy for individuals who are vision impaired or blind. Their goal is to empower, enlighten, and innovate communities in New Jersey about vision loss and make resources available for people with vision loss.

WBGO Storytelling Lab

Nov 5, 2020

Are you interested in creating media for your community? Find out more about our Community Storytelling Lab and apply below.

essexcountycommissioners, Instagram / Essex County

Essex County residents can apply for a 5.5-million-dollar coronavirus emergency rental assistance program. The program will provide a grant for income eligible Essex County residents to receive assistance on up to six months of rent. Residents must also meet the Federal income eligibility requirement, demonstrate a need or provide eviction notice and provide documentation of household income.

United Community Corporation

Three local nonprofit organizations, United Community Corporation, Roosevelt Community 4 U and Bessie Green Community Inc.  have all come together to ensure community members are taken care of as they face some of the toughest challenges during this pandemic

Essex County

Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr., The Board of Chosen Freeholders and Reverend Carmelo Roman, Lead Pastor at Temple Rock of My Salvation will host an Emergency Food Distribution Event on Thursday, October 15, 2020 at 9 a.m. The distribution will take place at Temple Rock of My Salvation located on 88-90 Verona Avenue, Newark, NJ.

Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair state University

The Peer Learning + Collaboration Fund in Newark is an opportunity for local reporters, media makers, organizations and city residents to apply with collaborative projects to meet information needs identified throughout the city.

Brit Harley

A new collaborative study has revealed what Newark residents feel they need the most.  

WBGO Community Engagement Reporter Brit Harley chats with Vanessa Maria Graber of the Free Press about the results of the study that shows some of the top priorities are getting timely and useful information about food and education, especially during the coronavirus pandemic.

Graber is the newest member of Free Press and is now focusing much of her work on Newark.

La Casa de Don Pedro

From September 21st through September 27, 2020, La Casa de Don Pedro kicks off Burgers and Brew; which will be a week-long digital and interactive celebration that promotes some of Northern New Jersey’s finest restaurants and breweries in an effort to encourage all of us to buy local and buy Black. A portion of the proceeds will support La Casa’s COVID-19 Food Relief Program.

Text COVID to 973-327-7774 or sign up below to receive texts from WBGO about COVID-19 updates.

Downtown Newark, New Jersey. (Wikimedia Photo/King of Hearts)


WBGO/Newark Public Radio launched a fund for city residents, community groups, and organizations who are addressing COVID-19 and other issues impacting their community either as a direct result of the pandemic or are linked to and heightened by it. The WBGO Newsroom Mini-grants Program will award grants for projects that address COVID-19 and other issues impacting their community and a commitment to sharing relevant news and information in their neighborhood. 

Here are our 2020 mini-grant awardees:  

The Gem Project, Inc.

Brit Harley / Newark Public Radio/WBGO

Newark native, Khajuaan Walker, is the visionary behind Coal Crown Creative; a lifestyle brand committed to exploring what it means to be Black and a self-advocate through programming and self-expression. Be heard, be loved, and be accomplished are the three pillars that all CCC programs and initiatives are grounded in. Coal Crown Creative released “Classically Beautiful”, two filmed discussions that featured Black women and their relationship to internal and external beauty.

News Voices

WBGO News is hosting a DIGITAL CONVERSATION ABOUT NEWARK on April 21 (Tuesday) at 3pm and you are invited to join in.  

The event is part of the News Voices-Free Press partnership that began a year ago in the WBGO News Deparment, made possible by a grant from the Dodge Foundation.  

Brit Harley / Newark Public Radio/WBGO

If the youth ran the city of Newark, what would they change? Students of Great Oaks Legacy Charter High School are answering this question. Sophia Domeville is educating the youth in Newark on how they can create the world the way they would like to see it and using art as the gateway to realize what is possible.

Newark is Mentor City

Jan 31, 2020

Last August, Thomas Owens became the Executive Director of Mentor Newark, formerly known as Newark Mentoring Movement. Owens was integral to the development of Eagle Academy School for Young Men in Newark, New Jersey. He was responsible all corporate and community partnerships. Some of these partnerships included New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), Mentoring USA, Prudential, the Campaign for Black Male Achievement, and St. Peter’s Youth Centre in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Brittany Harley / Newark Public Radio/WBGO

CEO & Founder of Urbanational, Clarissa Cummings hosted the first Bakeran Supper in Newark. Prompted by the Jeffersonian Dinner concept, a Bakeran Supper honors activist Ella Baker's approach to meaningful community building.   A curated, invite-only event hosted by Urbanational, a Bakeran Supper brings together 10 urban changemakers around a dinner table of great food and stimulating conversation. 

Kenneth Miles / 3rd Space

As a teenager, Cyntoia Brown-Long was convicted of first-degree murder and would have to serve 51 years in prison in order to be eligible for parole. On January 7, 2019, she was granted clemency. Brown-Long was released from prison about seven months later. In October of last year, she hosted a book signing at 3rd Space Co-Work in Newark.

Warner Bros Studios

Michael B. Jordan portrays Bryan Stevenson in the new film “Just Mercy”. A private screening was held at the Cityplex Theatre in Newark, New Jersey. Jordan was present along with Bryan Stevenson, Tim Blake Nelson, and Rob Morgan. He has made a tradition of hosting screenings in his hometown.

New Jersey Institute of Social Justice

The New Jersey Institute for Social Justice recently presented a panel discussion at NJPAC on the role of slavery in America – and in New Jersey.

Investigative reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones covers civil rights and racial injustice for The New York Times Magazine.

Project Ready
Brit Harley for WBGO News

This past Tuesday was National Voter Registration Day.  WBGO’s Brit Harley caught up with a local organization in Newark that’s trying to help the community while getting out important voter information.

Cases of bottled water are being loaded onto the carts of Newark residents in Lincoln Park…near Clinton Avenue…it’s the latest effort by Project Ready to get more people in the city registered to vote.  Shennell McCloud is the executive director of Project Ready.