Constance White, the former editor in chief of Essence magazine has revealed that she was fired for not sharing the same vision as her bosses. White claims to have been let go early last month, after leaders at Time Inc. wanted to remove Black women from being the focus of the publication.
White wasn’t given an explanation behind her firing, but points to disagreements with Time Inc. EIC, Martha Nelson. “My boss said, ‘you know what? It’s time to go,’” she explained to Journal-isms.“I was asked to leave my position. I asked, ‘Was it something we can discuss, or has the decision been made?’ She said, ‘The decision has been made.’
“I had a certain point of view about Black women being central to this magazine. The boss didn’t agree with me, and the president [of Essence Communications, Michelle Ebanks] didn’t agree with me. It became an untenable situation.”
At one time, Essence was Black-owned but was acquired by Time Inc. in 2005. Boasting a journalism career which spanned over 20 years, the company named White, editor in chief of the magazine in 2011. Although unsure of the next step in her career, she saw it important to speak up based on her love for the brand, and hopes that her replacement will feel the same way. “Essence needs stability and the brand needs a leader with a vision,” she added. “Black women are social leaders, culture leaders, we are aspirational and spiritual. Black women deserve the best. Essence is the last place where Black women should be demeaned and diminished.”