Derrick N. Ashong (DNA)

Senior Fellow

The James Brown of Tech & Media, Derrick Ashong, is the hardest working brother in the game. Born in a house with no running water in Accra, Ghana, he made it to Harvard and on to work with unknowns like Spielberg & Oprah. He has earned 3 Emmy nods for pioneering interactive content across platforms and has spoken about issues of Tech, Media & Society for UK Parliament, the UN, Stanford, Harvard & Wharton Business Schools, & MIT. While he and his wife were raising two toddlers, Derrick founded, a tech startup that drives and measures engagement for digital content. And because he had so much extra time on his hands, he simultaneously created two-time Interactive Emmy finalist, The World Cup of Hip Hop. Recently, he co-founded the innovation firm, Authentik, with Laurie Meadoff and Tony Krantz. He’s considering slowing down, but then again, nah!


Making the world a better place is not only your responsibility, it is your joy, it is your blessing, it’s your gift. It is your opportunity to make your life mean something. So take it. – DNA

Me in Three

What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?
“We’re counting on that one.” – Archbishop Desmond Tutu

If you had your own time machine, would you travel to the past or the future?
I would travel to the future, so I could take a trip on a starship.

What was your dream job as a kid?
Fighter Pilot

This pretty much sums up my existence