Erica Williams Simon is an award-winning content creator, educator, host and social critic focused on exploring the truth of who we are and how we want to live. As the current head of content programming at Snapchat where she helps maintain the editorial voice of the platform that reaches nearly 200 million users, her work is focused on helping a diverse, non-conformist generation of dreamers survive, thrive and change the world.
Erica has had an extensive and varied career in media, politics, faith and leadership development. As host and co-creator of “The Assembly", a new kind of talk show that blends real stories and important issues, executive produced by Rosario Dawson and host of Man Repeller's popular podcast "The Call", she is passionate about sharing messages that cut through the cliches and give people the tools they need to make radical changes in their lives and the world around them.
Previously, as Creative Director of Upworthy.com, the fastest growing digital media company of all time, Erica helped build a branded content studio focused on telling meaningful stories for some of the world’s largest brands. There and in her work as a columnist for TIME.com, she reached an audience of nearly 30 million people a month.
Prior to her work in media, Erica spent nearly a decade in Washington’s national political circles building Millennial engagement and demographically focused policy programs at the nation's leading progressive think tank, Center for American Progress, and Citizen Engagement Lab. With an emphasis on youth culture, diversity and human and civil rights, Erica advised everyone from the White House and Rock the Vote to Fortune 500 companies and was named one of Politicos Top 50 Politicos to Watch, NAACP's 40 Under 40, a World Economic Forum Global Shaper and an Aspen Institute Ideas Fellow for her work.
The O Magazine Women Rule Leadership Award winner has been a TV regular, appearing on outlets as varied as HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher to BET’s 106th & Park to Dr. Oz. Her work has been featured in Harvard Business Review, Washington Post, Huffington Post and ESSENCE magazine.
A grown-up preacher's daughter and church girl for life, the DC native now lives in sunny Los Angeles. When she is not on the road connecting with audiences or serving on the board of NPR Generation Listen, she can be found using her free time to read the hundreds of books that have overtaken her living room or sing copious amounts of 90s gospel and R&B.