James Blue is a seasoned and award-winning television production executive. He is currently senior content and special projects producer for PBS NewsHour. In addition to overseeing tape production, breaking news features, and special series, James serves as executive producer of the broadcast’s town hall meetings anchored by Gwen Ifill.
James previously served as Washington Bureau Chief and White House correspondent for ARISE News, a UK-based 24-hour news channel. James organized the channel’s Washington coverage, and oversaw the production and development of brand-defining broadcasts as the network’s director of special events. He oversaw productions across the world including supervising the channel’s coverage of Nelson Mandela’s funeral in South Africa.
During the 2012 election year James executive produced BET Networks’ political broadcasts. James oversaw several elements of the election coverage including exclusive interviews with President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, and extensive coverage of Republican nominee Mitt Romney. The USC Annenberg School of Communications awarded the 2013 Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism to James and the entire BET News team for this coverage.
James began at BET Networks overseeing the production of several projects including First Lady Michelle Obama’s historic trip to South Africa and Botswana as head of Public Affairs Media Group, Inc. (PAMG), a media production firm he founded in 2008. The firm’s clients included UNICEF, Johns Hopkins University Medical School, Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health, and the Abu Dhabi Environment Agency. His firm also contributed feature stories to PBS NewsHour.
James is a graduate of Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. Prior to starting his own firm he was a producer in the Koppel Group at the Discovery Channel. His debut documentary for Discovery, Iran – Most Dangerous Nation, won the 2006 national Emmy Award for best long-form program. James spent fourteen years as a producer for ABC News and NBC News, has reported extensively overseas, and was twice assigned to ABC News’ London bureau. During his final assignment for ABC News, he was the Nightline London producer. James has over twenty years of experience executing and supervising productions of all types around the globe.
Over the course of his career James’ work has won every major broadcast journalism award including eight national Emmy Awards, two Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia Awards, two George Foster Peabody Awards, two Overseas Press Club Awards, and an NABJ Award for Overall Excellence. James was twice a finalist for the Livingston Award for Young Journalists.
James currently serves on the board of trustees of the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA), the Princeton Alumni Weekly, and the Princeton University Alumni Association. He is a member of the Overseas Press Club, the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association.
Married and the father of two children, James resides with his family in Baltimore and Craftsbury, Vermont.