Jemele Hill was a quiet, shy kid that grew up in Detroit.
She attended Mumford High School, then Michigan State where she pursued a journalism degree.
She’s been with ESPN since 2006, and is now an important link between the merging conversation between sports and politics.
But on Tuesday, she was back home, being honored for her journey where it all began.
There’s no shortage of career milestones for Hill, who walked into the newly named 'Jemele J. Hill Auditorium' at her alma mater Detroit Mumford, but that honor was certainly up there.
“Looking back at all the lessons I’ve learned at Mumford, all the good times that we had, this school will always be very special to me,” Hill said.
Hill found herself at the center of controversy when she challenged President Trump on NFL players rights to kneel during the national anthem in protest of social injustices, and as her former teachers watched, they were reminded of the girl they saw in class.
One teacher proclaimed to the student body how proud she was of her former student as she watched Hill stand her ground on her position.
Hill anchored the coveted six o'clock 'Sportscenter' show, and has since left for a different position with the company.
Her impact will still be felt with ESPN as she moves to an online publication 'The Undefeated,' where she feels her talents in today’s sports environment can still resonate.
"Race and politics are colliding against each other all the time, and that was the big reason why I wanted to make the move from Sportscenter to The Undefeated, is I wanted to chronicle and write about those times from my perspective," Hill added.