Janna A. Zinzi (also known as jaz) is a strategist and storyteller using language and performance to uplift the voices and stories of people of color, especially women and gender non-conforming people. Her communications consulting is rooted in social justice; while her writing and dancing explores themes of artistic expression, pop culture, race, feminism, politics, spirituality and travel.
One aspect of Janna’s work is media relations and strategy. She is the Principal of Swirl Public Relations, a boutique communications consulting agency working with social justice organizations, media personalities, entrepreneurs and artists to maximize visibility. Janna got her start in public relations working in Harlem and uplifting the voices of people living with HIV/AIDS. Because of her love of the culture, she also worked Hip-Hop industry in the early-mid 2000s, doing public relations for AllHipHop.com as online journalism was becoming a burgeoning field and driver of news and culture. She returned to her roots of sexual health and reproductive justice work in 2007 and has been raising visibility and awareness to these causes ever since. She was worked with Forward Together, Black Lives Matter Global Network, Color of Change and numerous non-profit social justice organizations. Janna has provided digital and media support on various legislative campaigns in New York and California particularly around human rights and reproductive justice issues. Her media placements include The New York Times, MTV/Logo, NBC News, Cosmopolitan, Them, Huffington Post and dozens of major news and culture outlets. Janna has trained and advised thousands of leaders in media and digital strategy, media relations, and speaking to media.
As an artist, Janna performs theatrical burlesque as her alterego, jazabel jade. Her style of burlesque is rooted in challenging racial and gender stereotypes, and uses movement tell a range of stories about love and desire with full unabashed goddess energy! jazabel jade also teaches burlesque movement workshops for women and gender non-conforming people, as well as continuing to study Afro-diasporic dance styles from around the world. jaz has performed on stages around the country in New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, Minneapolis and even at the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend in Las Vegas. She has been dancing since the age of three, and music and dance are her greatest joys and biggest weapons against oppression. Soon she will be co-producing a burlesque and comedy series in Los Angeles.
Another piece of Janna’s work is writing articles exploring the intersections of arts, politics, pop culture, feminism, spirituality and travel. In particular, her writing aims to highlight the powerful work of people of color especially in a world where tragedy and evil dominate the news. She started writing publicly in the late 2000's co-founding the Goddesses Rising blog, and then as a contributor to Feministing. Since Janna has written various publications including The Root, KCET Southern California, Rewire and On She Goes in addition to ghostwriting for organizations. Additionally, she loves public speaking whether through co-hosting podcasts or radio, moderating panels or giving keynote addresses.
Janna is a lifelong New Yorker, even though she is now shining in Los Angeles (and loving it!). She is enjoying being bicoastal and working with people around the country and the world on arts and activism focused projects.