Avis Thomas-Lester

Avis Thomas-Lester is an award-winning journalist who currently serves as the executive editor of the AFRO-American Newspapers, headquartered in Baltimore. Previously, she worked as a staff writer for the Washington Post, where, for 22 years, she covered a variety of beats including African American affairs and culture. She has always been happiest when writing stories of interest to African Americans. Avis retired from the Washington Post in May 2012 to take the helm of the AFRO as the Black owned newspaper celebrated its 120th anniversary. As executive editor of the AFRO, she guides coverage for predominantly African American readerships in Baltimore, Washington, D.C., and Prince George’s County, Maryland. Working at the AFRO is the fulfillment of a dream she’s always had to run a small news operation. Avis’ hobbies include reading history and historical documents, traveling, biking, dancing, cooking and crocheting. She also enjoys decorating homes and renovating rooms. She has a part time business where she helps women of a certain age to reinvent their physical appearance. Avis is currently working on two biographies and a book about marriage. She is an avid volunteer who has led Black arts and culture programs for children for more than 12 years. She mentors young mothers, teenage girls and young Black men. She lives in suburban Maryland with her husband, James, a juvenile justice administrator. They have a son, Zachary, 19, a talented musician, college student and righteous young Black man who is going to make a mark on the world doing something involving music. He plays cello, bass guitar, trombone and keyboards, sings and writes music to the delight of his parents. They are also raising their nephew Christopher, 16, a talented artist who aspires to be a professional baseball player.