KJ Kearney

A native of North Charleston, KJ is a product of Charleston County public schools and a proud 2005 graduate of South Carolina State University, where he played football and graduated from the honors program.

A 2015 recipient of the Summerville Councilmen’s Award for his work in the community, KJ has served as a basketball coach for elementary school students on the East side of the Charleston Peninsula, substitute teacher, and as a columnist for the Charleston City Paper where he routinely writes about economic disparity, race inequality, social injustices, and hip-hop culture. His writing has earned him two nominations for the AAN Awards, which highlights the best alt-news writing in the US and Canada.

KJ is also the founder of Charleston Sticks Together, a creative platform that, whether through t-shirts with Gullah Geechee vernacular, or lapel pins that re-interpret the Confederate flag, aims to shows that all of Charleston is beautiful.

In 2016, KJ recently won the Democratic nomination for South Carolina House of Representatives District 15. While he barely lost his race against a two-term incumbent, he continues to serve his community as a board member for the Upper Peninsula based nonprofit, Enough Pie, and on the advisory committee for the women’s empowerment nonprofit organization, the Center for Women.

KJ has been a featured speaker, moderator, host, or panelist for many organizations including Creative Mornings Charleston, Hi Harmony, SURJ, the City of Charleston, the Charleston Democratic Party, and the Good Business Summit, to name a few.

Currently, KJ works as a community outreach consultant for the International African American Museum. He is also working the with city of North Charleston’s Cultural Arts department to produce events for their annual Arts Fest, as well as with the City of Charleston for their debut poetry festival, Free Verse. He will also be making a guest appearance on the upcoming season of the hit international television show “Hate They Neighbor”, which airs on the Viceland Channel.

KJ loves champagne, trap music, college football, grey sneakers, bow ties, and often makes vegan culinary decisions even though he’s a card carrying pescatarian.

Twitter: @h1gher