Dr Mark Naison is Professor of African and African American Studies at Fordham and the founder and principal investigator of the Bronx African American History Project. He is the author of four books, and over one hundred articles on African American History, labor history, sports and popular culture. His book White Boy: A Memoir, was the subject of feature programs on BET and the Tavis Smiley Show, and was reviewed in The New York Times, The Crisis, and Black newspapers throughout the nation. His most recent book The Rat That Got Away: A Bronx Memoir was reviewed in the The New York Times and has been adopted as required reading in schools and youth programs throughout the Bronx and New York City

The opposite of an “Ivory Tower Intellectual", Naison has spent more than thirty years as a coach and community organizer in Brooklyn and the Bronx, and has gained more than a little “street cred” through his appearance on “The Chappelle Show” and for the educational raps he gives in Bronx Schools under the name “Notorious Phd".