Biography

Martha Diaz is an award winning community organizer, social entrepreneur, media producer, archivist, curator, mentor, and educator. For twenty-five years, Diaz has traversed between the hip-hop entertainment industry, public sector and academia. She has worked in Hollywood and independent movie productions, producing short films, TV shows, documentaries, music videos, and PSA’s. Diaz founded, produced and curated the Hip-Hop Odyssey International Film Festival and Hip-Hop Education Summit, and has been the executive director of the community building organization Hip-Hop Association since 2004. In 2010, Diaz formed the Hip-Hop Education Center to cultivate and professionalize the field of hip-hop-based education. She has published research papers on hip-hop education and is co-editor of the Hip-Hop Education Guidebook, Vol. I (Hip-Hop Association, 2007) and Rebel Music: Resistance Through Hip-Hop and Punk (Information Age Publishing, 2015). Among her fellowships and residencies, Diaz served as a resident of NJ Performing Arts Center’s Alternate Routes Program, Fellow at NYU’s Reynolds Program for Social Entrepreneurship, Fellow at the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation – National Museum of American History, resident Hip-Hop Scholar/Curator at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and Columbia University Community Scholar. Diaz has an M.A. in Moving Image Archiving and Preservation from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and an M.A. in Hip-Hop Social Entrepreneurship from New York University’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. Diaz has been a guest curator at the Museum of the Moving Image and The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, and is a member of the Cornell Hip-Hop Collection advisory board and Hip-Hop Hall of Fame. Some of her archival projects include working with Ralph McDaniel (Video Music Box), James Top (Graffiti TV,) and Parkwood Entertainment (Beyoncé Knowles-Carter). Her latest archive project is the Untitled, Tupac Documentary, directed by Steve McQueen. Diaz is the associate producer for the NAS: Time Is Illmatic documentary, which opened the Tribeca Film Festival in 2014. Diaz has recently been appointed as a Hiphop Archive & Research Institute and Nasir Jones Fellow at Harvard University during the 2017-2018 school year.