Well-known poet Taylor Mali will speak at Black Hills State University Tuesday, Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. in the Meier Recital Hall as part of the Madeline A. Young Distinguished Speaker Series.
Mali was born in New York City in 1965. He learned at an early age that words have power. In graduate school, he became interested in and eventually president of Poetry Slam, Inc., the non-profit organization that oversees all poetry slams in North America. Mali also spent nine years teaching a variety of subjects including English, history, math, and S.A.T. test preparation. At the end of those nine years, he decided to follow his passion and pursue teaching and poetry on a global scale.
He is a vocal advocate of educators and the nobility of teaching. Mali has traveled throughout the world to perform and lecture for teachers. Over the last 12 years his Quest for One Thousand Teachers, which was completed in April 2012, helped create 1,000 new teachers through “poetry, persuasion, and perseverance.” Mali has also recently published a book of essays, “What Teachers Make: In Praise of the Greatest Job in the World.”
The event is sponsored by the Madeline A. Young Distinguished Speaker Series. The series was established in 1986 by a gift endowment from Madeline Young, a 1924 alumna. Young expressed her desire to host controversial, stimulating, and enlivening speakers at BHSU. It was initiated at the University in 1987 with an address by former United Nations Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick. Other Madeline Young Speakers have included: Terry Waite, former hostage, hostage negotiator and envoy for England’s Archbishop of Canterbury; Felix Justice and Danny Glover, actors; Sam Donaldson, television broadcaster; Doris Kearns Goodwin, Pulitzer Prize winner; and Lech Walesa, former Polish president.
The event is free and open to the public. For more information contact Steve Meeker, vice president for University Advancement, at 605-642-6385 or Steve.Meeker@BHSU.edu.