Ashlei Stevens is an award-winning writer, media relations expert, independent television & event host, voice-over talent, and education advocate, who has a professional goal of telling powerful stories to inform communities and help non-profit organizations increase their visibility, and personal passion of helping young women of color fulfill their educational and career pursuits.
Residing in the nation's capital, Ashlei currently serves host of her self-produced web show, "Hot Topics & Hot Mess," where she offers the latest updates in pop culture and politics. She is also media relations director for a government relations organization, where she was featured in CNN with Don Lemon to discuss the historic government shutdown in January 2019. Prior to this, she served as press secretary and fundraiser at UNCF (United Negro College Fund). She continues to spread her wit, charm, and warm persona through hosting and public speaking engagements including UNCF’s nationwide college-readiness tour in addition to regular television appearances offering commentary for the fifth season in a row on criminal cases on TV One’s top-rated show, “Fatal Attraction.” Additionally, she has been featured on Oxygen's "Snapped, the ID Channel's "Murder Calls," and The Weather Channel's "Storm of Suspicion."
Born and raised in South Carolina, Ashlei earned degrees in Mass Communication and Modern Languages from Winthrop University in Rock Hill, S.C. She went on to become an education reporter, working for The Spartanburg Herald-Journal after interning as a published reporter at The New York Times. She also served as education policy adviser to former South Carolina Governor (now Congressman) Mark Sanford, but resigned in 2009 to move to New York City to pursue her dreams of hosting a talk show.
Between 2009 and 2015, Ashlei served as host and producer of several talk shows across New York City, including being one of four hosts selected from a nationwide search for Time Warner Cable’s “Born to Shine,” and serving as host of Uptown Magazine’s web show, which highlighted African Americans in the entertainment industry. She has interviewed high-achieving students and top music artists for BET at UNCF’s “An Evening of Stars®,” covered the red carpet at the American Back Film Festival, and has also interviewed dozens of presidents of the nation’s historically black colleges and universities.