Dr. Lester K. Spence

(Health Fellows & Scholars)
Associate Professor, Political Science
The Johns Hopkins University
Baltimore, Maryland
United States

Focus Areas

Community & Civic Engagement
Political Science
Racial Equity & Healing
African-American / Black Communities
Racial Equity & Healing


Dr. Lester K. Spence is an Associate Professor of Political Science and Africana Studies at Johns Hopkins University. His specialties include black politics, racial politics, urban politics, public opinion, and American political thought. Dr. Spence's work has appeared in both academic journals (including the American Journal of Political Science, Political Research Quarterly, Political Analysis, the WEB Dubois Review, and the National Political Science Review), and in the popular press (Urbanite Magazine, Salon.com, Africana.com, TheRoot.com, the Washington Post, thegrio.com). His first book, "Stare in the Darkness: The Limits of Hip-hop and Black Politics," was published in June 2011, and was one of the first books to empirically examine the political effect of hip-hop on black communities. Dr. Spence received his bachelor’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. He is a proud native of the Detroit area.