clock menu more-arrow no yes
A multicolored frame surrounds three black-and white photos of men and women. At left, artist Favianna Rodriguez, a Latina woman with short curly hair and glasses. Center, host and writer Ashley C. Ford, a Black woman with glasses and dangly earrings. Right, musician John Legend, a Black man wearing a suit.
Meet the Guests of Into the Mix
Photos courtesy of talent; illustrations by Niki Usagi

Meet the Host and Guests of Into the Mix

Introducing the artists, activists, and all-around amazing people who are working to build a better world.

This advertising content was produced in collaboration between Vox Creative and our sponsor, without involvement from Vox Media editorial staff.

Meet the host and guests of Into the Mix — a Ben & Jerry’s podcast about joy and justice, produced with Vox Creative. In conversation with host Ashley C. Ford, they’ll dive deep into their art, activism, and their fight to build a more equitable world.

A black-and-white photo of host and writer Ashley C. Ford, a Black woman with close-cropped hair wearing an off-shoulder top and dangly earrings.
Writer and Host Ashley C. Ford

Meet the Host: Ashley C. Ford

Ashley C. Ford is an Indianapolis-based writer, podcaster, and educator whose work explores themes of identity, race, sexuality, and all the other things that make up who we are.

In 2021, Ford published her first book, Somebody’s Daughter, a memoir about coming to terms with her relationship with her father, who’d been incarcerated for 30 years. It became an instant New York Times best-seller and critical success.

A black and white photo of musician John Legend, a 40-something Black man smiling wearing a pinstriped suit.

Episode 1: John Legend

John Legend is an artist and activist who made history as the first African American man to join the prestigious EGOT club (for people who have won all four of the Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Awards). The 12-time Grammy Award-winner released his seventh studio album, Bigger Love, in 2020. Recently, Legend announced his first Las Vegas Residency entitled, “Love In Las Vegas” which will begin in April 2022 at Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino. Legend joined the Emmy-nominated show, The Voice, for Season 16 (2019) and most recently wrapped Season 21 as a coach.

As an activist, Legend initiated the FREEAMERICA campaign to change the conversation surrounding criminal justice policies and to end mass incarceration and HUMANLEVEL, which is igniting systematic change and building racial equity across American cities and communities.

A black-and-white photo of Artist Favianna Rodriguez, a smiling 20-something Latina woman with short dark curly hair, glasses, and dangly earrings,

Episode 2: Favianna Rodriguez

Favianna Rodriguez is an interdisciplinary artist, cultural strategist, and social justice activist based in Oakland, California. Her art and praxis address migration, gender justice, climate change, racial equity, and sexual freedom.

Favianna’s work serves as a record of her human experiences as a woman of color embracing joy and pleasure through personal transformation and psychedelics. Favianna’s practice includes visual art, public art, writing, cultural organizing and power building. In addition to her expansive studio practice, she is the co-founder and president of The Center for Cultural Power, a national organization that empowers artists to disrupt the status quo and ignite change at the intersection of culture and social justice. She has received awards such as the Robert Rauschenberg Artist as Activist Fellowship, the Atlantic Fellowship for Racial Equity and the SOROS Equality Fellowship.

A black and white photograph of political consultant and author Andrew Aydin - a smiling, light-skinned man with short dark hair - against a background of colorful shapes.

Episode 3: Andrew Aydin

Andrew Aydin is creator and co-author of the graphic memoir series, MARCH, which chronicles the life of Congressman and civil rights icon John Lewis. Co-authored with Rep. Lewis and illustrated by Nate Powell, MARCH is the first comics work to ever win the National Book Award.

In 2019, Andrew joined with Kelly Sue Deconnick, Matt Fraction, Valentine DeLandro, and Vaughn Shinall to found Good Trouble Productions to produce innovative nonfiction graphic novel and multimedia projects, including RUN, a sequel series to the March trilogy, and Registered, a comic book for the New York City Department of Education about youth voting and distributed as part of the NYCDOE’s “Civics for All” curriculum, as well as “The Long March,” a large-scale custom art installation and online experience for Ben & Jerry’s in Vermont.

A black and white photograph of musician Big Freedia - a Black, gender nonconforming person with long white hair in a bun, glamorous makeup, and a big smile - on a background of colorful geometric shapes.

Episode 4: Big Freedia

Known as the larger-than-life ambassador of New Orleans Bounce music, Big Freedia is a nationally recognized hip-hop artist, performer, and TV personality. In addition to releasing her own critically acclaimed EPs, ‘3rd Ward Bounce’ (2018) and ‘Louder’ (2020), Big Freedia has appeared on several high profile projects, including her cover of ‘Judas’ on Lady Gaga’s Born this Way The Tenth Anniversary album (June 2021). She also appeared on Beyoncé’s Grammy award-winning, Formation and on Drake’s Nice For What, always bringing her distinctive voice and signature catchphrases to all her work.

In 2011, her ascension in the music industry was chronicled on the highly rated reality show, Big Freedia Bounces Back. She was the official host for the 2019 Met Gala IG live stream red carpet event and a host on 2021’s Dick Clark’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve TV Show. Known by her fans as the “Queen Diva,” Big Freedia is a loud and proud advocate for racial and gender equality and LGBTQ+ rights.

Big Freedia’s highly anticipated EP Big Diva Energy will be released in July of 2021.

Episode 5: Jeffery Robinson

Jeffery Robinson is the founder and CEO of The Who We Are Project, which aims to become one of the central voices in correcting the American narrative on our shared history of anti- Black racism.

Since graduating from Harvard Law School in 1981, Jeffery has four decades of experience working on criminal and racial justice issues. Initially, he represented indigent clients in state court at The Defender Association and then in federal court at the Federal Public Defender’s Office in Seattle. In 1988, Jeffery began a 27-year private practice at Schroeter, Goldmark & Bender, also in Seattle, where he represented a broad range of clients in local, state, and federal courts on charges ranging from shoplifting to securities fraud and first-degree murder. He has tried over 200 criminal cases to verdict and has tried more than a dozen civil cases representing plaintiffs suing corporate and government entities. Jeffery was one of the original members of the John Adams Project and worked on the behalf of one of five men held at Guantanamo Bay charged with carrying out the 9/11 attacks. In 2015, Jeffery left private practice to become of the ACLU National Office’s Deputy Legal Directors and the Director of the ACLU’s Trone Center for Justice and Equality. However, after six years, he left the ACLU and launched the non-profit organization The Who We Are Project. Jeffery continues to be a nationally recognized trial attorney and respected teacher of trial advocacy. He is a faculty member of the National Criminal Defense College and has lectured on trial skills all over the United States. He is past president of the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and a past member of the board of directors and life member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Jeffery is also an elected fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers.

More From Ben & Jerry's Into The Mix 2022

Episode 5: Jeffery Robinson on A Truthful Retelling of American History

Episode 4: Big Freedia on Turning Pain into Progress

Episode 3: In Comic Books, the Civil Rights Struggle Gains a New Audience 

Episode 1: John Legend on Art, Activism, and Building a Better World

Episode 2: Artist Favianna Rodriguez on Transcending Pain Through Art

The Production of ‘Into the Mix’

Into the Mix is a Ben & Jerry’s podcast produced by Vox Creative and ABF Creative.

Advertiser Content From Ben & Jerry's logo