Kevin Powell

Writer, Speaker, Activist

Kevin Powell is one of the most respected and celebrated political, cultural, literary, and hip-hop voices in America today. The Jersey City product of a single mother, absent father, horrific poverty, and violence, he was able to study at Rutgers University in his home state of New Jersey due to the Educational Opportunity Fund, a program created during the Civil Rights Movement to benefit poor youth. Says Kevin, “Just to be able to get to college, to be exposed to a new world, a new way, changed my life forever, and I am forever grateful for the chance.” Kevin has gone on to be the author of 13 books, including his critically-acclaimed autobiography, The Education of Kevin Powell: A Boy’s Journey into Manhood, which is being adapted for the screen. One of his upcoming books will be a biography of Tupac Shakur, who Kevin interviewed several times while a senior writer for Vibe. Indeed, he has penned articles, essays, and blogs for a wide range of newspapers and magazines and major websites, including The New York Times,The Washington Post, CNN, The Nation, NPR, ESPN, Essence, Ebony, Rolling Stone, Esquire, HuffPost, Utne Reader, The Guardian, The Baffler, and British GQ. Moving into the podcast world, Kevin is set to be the host of “The Session with Kevin Powell,” which will feature interviews both with celebrities and everyday Americans, while also discussing major issues of our times and introduce new music artists. As a civil and human rights activist, Kevin will launch a new American organization in 2020, yet to be named, focused on voter education and voter empowerment, and bringing people together, and which will showcase a website full of blogs from people of all backgrounds. Kevin’s work also includes an annual clothing drive for homeless youth in New York City; a leadership role in the movement to re-define manhood away from sexism and violence; a deep responsibility to mentorship and development of younger people as voices for change; and a commitment to democracy, justice, and equality for all people, be it #MeToo, immigrant rights, gun violence prevention, marriage equality, or an end to racial profiling. To further demonstrate that commitment to a life of service Kevin ran for Congress in New York in 2008 and 2010; he has worked and traveled in all 50 American states and 5 of the world’s 7 continents; he is writing, directing, and producing his first documentary film, “Brotha Man,” about healthy manhood versus toxic manhood; and Kevin is one of the producers of “SHE, a Choreoplay,” a major theater production about ending violence against women and girls, and healing and empowerment, created by his wife Jinah Parker, the dancer, choreographer, and playwright. “SHE” will make its Off-Broadway debut in the second half of 2020. Kevin and his wife are proud and long-time residents of Brooklyn, New York.

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