Joe Madison, an influential discuss radio host with a rumbling musical baritone, who interviewed President Barack Obama within the Oval Workplace and quite a few different political leaders in his Washington, D.C., studio, urging them to take motion on civil and human rights points, has died at his residence in Washington. He was 74.
His household introduced the demise on Thursday however didn’t specify when it occurred. In December, Mr. Madison stated in a press release that he was taking a depart from his each day present, on SiriusXM radio, after studying that his prostate most cancers had returned; it had been in remission because it was first identified in 2009.
Mr. Madison was ranked the No. 6 most essential discuss present host within the nation in 2023 by Talkers Magazine on its Heavy Hundred record, the place he was additionally the highest-ranked nonwhite host.
“Joe Madison was the voice of a technology,” President Biden said in a put up on social media this week. “Whether or not it was a starvation strike for voting rights or his advocacy for anti-lynching laws that I used to be proud to register 2022, Joe fought exhausting in opposition to injustice.”
Mr. Madison, a former senior official with the N.A.A.C.P., blended on-air social activism with advocacy outdoors the studio. He participated in a 73-day starvation strike in 2021 to induce Congress to strengthen voting rights legal guidelines after Democrats had gained management of the Senate and the White Home.
On Mr. Madison’s present, Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the brand new majority chief, pledged to get behind long-stalled anti-lynching laws as a result of, he stated, Black voters had performed an important function in returning Democrats to energy and “we owe them.”
“No person fought more durable for his beliefs and his group than Joe Madison,” Mr. Schumer stated in a press release.
Different current friends included Vice President Kamala Harris, Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey, Consultant Nancy Pelosi of California when she was speaker of the Home, and Consultant James Clyburn of South Carolina.
On the congressional signing of the Emmett Until Anti-Lynching Act in 2021, Ms. Pelosi thanked Mr. Madison for championing it.
His broadcast — 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Monday via Friday — was on the City View channel on SiriusXM, which Mr. Madison joined completely in 2013. For many years earlier than that he was a fiery persona on two Washington discuss radio stations, WWRC-AM and WOL-AM, the place he was often called “the decide” for fact-checking callers.
“Individuals will name and attempt to provide you with misinformation,” he told The Washington Publish in 2013. “Most individuals get upset out of frustration. They don’t like being challenged, however that’s how I grew up — individuals challenged your thought course of.”
Earlier than coming into radio in 1980, he was the political director of the N.A.A.C.P. and served on its nationwide board for 14 years. Whereas there, he led a march from Los Angeles to Baltimore to advertise voter registration.
Mr. Madison continued his political activism as a radio host. He was arrested in 2001 after handcuffing himself to the Sudanese Embassy in Washington; he had made repeated broadcasts to boost consciousness of modern-day slavery in that African nation. He made a number of journeys to Sudan and, working with the Swiss-based Christian Solidarity Worldwide, helped free Sudanese who had been being held as slaves.
In 1996, Mr. Madison was arrested whereas main a protest outdoors C.I.A. headquarters after repeatedly accusing the company on his present of contributing to an explosion of crack cocaine use in Black communities within the Nineteen Eighties. The allegations had been raised in a sequence of articles in The San Jose Mercury Information. A Michigan congressman, Consultant John Conyers Jr., referred to as into Mr. Madison’s present to reward him for elevating the problem, however critics stated Mr. Madison was spreading a conspiracy idea to Black listeners.
A House Intelligence Committee investigation later discovered no proof linking the C.I.A. to the epidemic.
In 2015, Mr. Madison remained on the air for 52 straight hours to boost cash for the Smithsonian Nationwide Museum of African American Historical past and Tradition.
Joseph Edward Madison was born on June 16, 1949, in Dayton, Ohio, to Felix Madison, a press operator, and Nancy (Stone) Madison. He was the primary in his household to graduate from school, incomes a B.A. in sociology in 1971 from Washington College in St. Louis, the place he was a operating again on the Bears soccer crew, a baritone soloist within the campus choir and a D.J. for the campus radio station.
At 24, he turned director of the N.A.A.C.P.’s Detroit department. His radio profession started at Detroit’s WXYZ-AM. After shifting to Washington, his reputation led to nationwide syndication of his present, then to a cope with SiriusXM, the satellite tv for pc platform accessible to subscribers nationally. He referred to as himself “The Black Eagle” on air. He was inducted into the Radio Corridor of Fame in 2019.
In 1977, Mr. Madison married Sharon L. Moore, who survives him, together with 4 kids, Shawna, Jason, Monesha and Michelle; 5 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.
Mr. Madison usually posed a trademark problem to friends: “What are you going to do about it?”
“I all the time have seen myself as an individual who acknowledges that one particular person could make a distinction,” he explained in 2013. “Rosa Parks was a seamstress. Mabel Teel was a mom. Fannie Lou was a share cropper. President Obama was a group organizer.”