Poet, writer and activist Nikki Giovanni will visit UM-Dearborn on Friday, Nov. 13 to discuss race and social justice as part of the campusís ďConversation on RaceĒ discussion series

November 6, 2009


DEARBORN / Nov. 6, 2009---Poet, writer and activist Nikki Giovanni will visit the University of Michigan-Dearborn on Friday, Nov. 13 to discuss race and social justice as part of the campusís ďConversation on RaceĒ discussion series.   

The event, which is free and open to the public, will take place from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Kochoff Hall inside the campusís University Center.   

UM-Dearbornís Conversation on Race, which began as a collaboration between the campus and New Detroit, is an ongoing series of forums geared toward promoting open and honest discussion about racial issues.  Two programs are held each semester featuring a guest speaker followed by both large and small group discussion.   

A world-renowned poet, writer, commentator, activist and educator, Giovanni is a widely-read American poet who prides herself on being "a Black American, a daughter, a mother, a professor of English," according to her Web site.   

The author of more than 30 books for both adults and children, she is a University Distinguished Professor at Virginia Tech.   

Giovanniís honors and awards have been steady and plentiful throughout her career. The recipient of some 25 honorary degrees, she has been named Woman of the Year by Mademoiselle Magazine, Ladies Home Journal and Ebony Magazine.  She was tapped for the Ohio Women's Hall of Fame and named an Outstanding Woman of Tennessee.  She also has received Governor's Awards from both Tennessee and Virginia.     

Many of Giovanni's books have received honors and awards including her autobiography Gemini which was a finalist for the National Book Award.  Her books Love Poems, Blues: For All the Changes, Quilting the Black-Eyed Pea, Acolytes, and Hip Hop Speaks to Children: A Celebration of Poetry with a Beat were all honored with NAACP Image Awards.  Blues: For All the Changes also reached number four on the Los Angeles Times bestseller list, a rare achievement for a book of poems.   

Most recently, her children's picture book Rosa, about civil rights legend Rosa Parks, became a Caldecott Honors Book.  Rosa also reached number three on the New York Times bestseller list.    

Giovanni's spoken word recordings have achieved widespread recognition, too, including her album Truth Is On Its Way which was a Top 100 album and received the Best Spoken Word Album award given by the National Association of Radio and Television Announcers.    

Giovanniís talk is sponsored by the Office of the Chancellor and the Student Activities Office.  For more information about the COR series, call the Student Activities Office at 313-593-5390.


The University of Michigan-Dearborn does not necessarily endorse speakersí views.

About University of Michigan-Dearborn
The University of Michigan-Dearborn is celebrating its 50th anniversary throughout the 2009/2010 academic year. Founded in 1959 with a gift of just over 200 acres of land and $6.5 million from the Ford Motor Company, UM-Dearborn has been distinguished by its commitment to providing excellent educational opportunities responsive to the needs of southeastern Michigan. The university has 8,700 students pursuing undergraduate, masterís, doctoral and professional degrees in the liberal arts and sciences, engineering, business, education, and public administration. With a faculty devoted to teaching, and students committed to achievement, UM-Dearborn has been shaped by its history of interaction with business, government and industry in southeastern Michigan, and is committed to responding to the needs of the region in the future.


PHONE: 313-593-5542
The Office of University Relations
Room 1040, Administration Building
University of Michigan-Dearborn