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Black In Gaming Awards


The Fifth Annual Black In Gaming Awards Show will be virtually simulcast live on all platforms: Streamyard, Facebook, and YouTube on Saturday, November 13, 2021, at 6 p.m. ET / 3 p.m. PT, celebrating the outstanding Black executives, creators, and developers in the video gaming industry. The awards are sponsored by Sony Interactive Entertainment, Niantic, Brass Lion Entertainment, and ESA (Entertainment Software Association).

In advance of the The Black in Gaming Awards, here is the complete list of the 2021 honorees:

Excellence in Programming Award

Julian Walshaw-Vaughan, Vice President at Engineering at Roblox in San Francisco, CA

Industry Champion Award

Davina Mackey, Director, Support Services & Operations, PlayStation Studios Quality Assurance at Sony Interactive Entertainment in San Diego, CA

Media Award

Gerard "HipHopGamer" Williams, Media Personality and Gaming Journalist — WQHT (97.1 FM) – also known as Hot 97 in New York, NY

Lifetime Achievement Award

Travis Williams, Head of Third-Party Production, Oculus/Facebook where he helps steer the future of Virtual Reality entertainment in Long Beach, CA

Excellency in Artistry Award

Lauren A. Brown, Associate Art Director at Zynga on Words With Friends 2. She is also an Emmy Award-Winning illustrator and game developer in Austin, TX.

Image Award

Stanley Pierre-Louis, President & CEO of Entertainment Software Association (ESA) the voice and advocate for the U.S. video game industry in Washington, DC. The ESA also owns and operates E3, the industry's premier trade show and marketing event.

Performance Award

Eli Harris, Award-Winning Actor and Voice Artist in Brooklyn, NY. He is known for Elder Scrolls: Skyrim–Wyrmstooth and the current voice of Manscaped and the LFA/UFC Fight Pass. Also just linked a deal for Chris Paul's new series Front Office, where he is the voice for the entire show

Social and Economic Initiative

Trinidad Hermida, Founder & CEO of The Hermida Company LLC in San Francisco, CA. The company focused on "Building Equity through Empathy" and Co-founder of Mr. Augmented, a mission-based startup that is focused on creating practical immersive Augmented Reality experiences that impact and enhance users' everyday life.

Indie Developer Award

Neil Jones, Senior UX & Games Designer at Unity Technologies, and Indie Developer/Game Creator at Aerial Knight LLC in Detroit, MI.

Social channels including:

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Hosted by long-time Black Gaming industry advocates, Carl Varnado and gaming executive Laura Teclemariam, the B.I.G. Awards are designed to educate the game industry, recognize Black game developers, as well as help empower the next generation.

"People of color have been an integral, and often unrecognized, under-appreciated part of the game industry from the start," says Black in Gaming Executive Director Carl Varnado. "This is how we honor the accomplishments of Black game developers and creators, industry-wide."


Saturday, November 13, 2021 6 p.m. ET / 3 p.m. PT


Each year the achievements of top Black executives, creators, and developers who have made a significant impact in the video gaming industry are recognized by being honored for their outstanding accomplishments. Furthermore, The BIG Awards aims to bridge the ecosystem gap between Black creators and consumers by creating new career opportunities for marginalized communities, as studies show approximately 2% of all game developers are people of black descent; while the demographic of players continues to be a huge consumer market segment.

"Through the BIG. Awards, we're able to recognize the game industry's 'hidden figures'," says Black in Gaming's Chairwoman of the Board, Laura Teclemariam, "and so we help ensure Black ingenuity is documented and shared while recognizing their contributions for the aspiring game developers of tomorrow."

About Black in Gaming Foundation

The Black in Gaming (BIG) Foundation is a 501(c)3 volunteer community dedicated to cultivating, supporting, and promoting Black professionals in the video game industry. By actively working on creating opportunities for Black people in the video game industry, BIG also develops action plans to combat systemic institutionalized racism that manifests itself in unsafe spaces, micro-aggressions, and hidden discrimination in the workplace. For more information on Black in Gaming, visit

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