Emil Wilbekin

Emil Wilbekin is a lifestyle expert, brand startegist, and transmedia content professional. Wilbekin is the former Editor-at-Large at ESSENCE Magazine. In this role, he was responsible for executing covers for ESSENCE. In addition, he managed talent relations and develops 360º activations across the brand—connecting print, digital and live events.

Previously, Emil served as Managing Editor of Essence.com, where he was responsible for the development of original daily programming for the site. He also led the Essence.com editorial team and worked on the development of the site’s unique offerings, which include videos, an online community, social media, tools and applications.

Prior to joining ESSENCE, Wilbekin had been the Editor-in-Chief, GIANT and Giantmag.com. Wilbekin also served as a consultant on Microsoft’s official Lebron James website. In addition, Wilbekin was previously a reporter for AOL Black Voices, and the VP of Brand Development for Marc Ecko.

Wilbekin began his career as one of the founding editors of Vibe magazine, where he also served as the Style Editor, Fashion Director and Editor-in-Chief. Under Wilbekin’s leadership, Vibe won the National Magazine Award for General Excellence. He also served as the VP of Brand Development for Vibe Ventures, where he oversaw Vibe.com, mobile, books, and Vibe TV, and executive produced the Vibe Awards.

Wilbekin holds a B.S. in Mass Media Arts from Hampton University and an M.S. in Journalism from Columbia University.