Kwame Alexander

EXCLUSIVE
  • NYT Bestselling Author of 40 Books
  • Emmy-Winning Producer
  • Regular Contributor, NPR's Morning Edition
  • Co-Founder, LEAP for Ghana (International Literacy Program)

Internationally renowned poet, New York Times bestselling author of 40 books, Emmy-winning producer, and educator Kwame Alexander is on a mission to change the world one word at a time. His latest book, Why Fathers Cry at Night, is a powerfully intimate and non-traditional memoir steeped in family history, recipes and poetry. With this vulnerable new offering, Kwame offers people the opportunity to get to know and appreciate his writing on a deeper and more personal level.. Kwame has led cultural exchange delegations to Brazil, Italy, Singapore, and Ghana, where he opened the Barbara E. Alexander Memorial Library and Health Clinic in Ghana, as a part of LEAP for Ghana – now LEAP Global – an international literacy program he co-founded. He is the Writer and Executive Producer of the Disney+ series The Crossover, based on his bestselling novel of the same name, is the founder of Big Sea Entertainment, and is the Executive Producer and Host of the groundbreaking reality TV series America’s Next Great AuthorIn sought-after engagements, Kwame offers inspiring insights and his powerful storytelling resonates with audiences of all kinds.

Twice long-listed for the National Book Award, Kwame is the recipient of numerous awards and honors including The Newbery Award, The Coretta Scott King Author Honor, three NAACP Image Award Nominations, the Inaugural Pat Conroy Legacy Award, The Dominion Energy Strong Men and Women of Virginia, and the Penn State Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award. A regular contributor to NPR’s Morning Edition and NPR’s Poet in Residence, he has appeared in or on: The Today Show, Comedy Central, BET, The New York TimesThe Washington PostParade Magazine, and ESPN’s TheUndefeated.com. Kwame has delivered hundreds of riveting keynote speeches for corporations, educational institutions, commencements, and annual organization conferences such as Hallmark, Qualtrics, Kidscreen, Teachers College Columbia University, OpenText, and The International Literacy Association.

 



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Past Hosts Include:
  • Chautauqua Institution
  • American Camp Association
  • Association Millersville University
  • Livermore Laboratory Employee Services
  • Learning Sciences International
  • The Carey School
  • Arts House Limited
  • Qualtrics LLC.
Saying Yes to What's Possible: A Conversation with Kwame Alexander | Kennedy Center - Get Sharable Link
Talks & Conversations with Kwame Alexander
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Light for the World to See

A Talk and Performance on the quintessential American bullet points of Race, Racism, and Hope. ...

A Talk and Performance on the quintessential American bullet points of Race, Racism, and Hope.

Say Yes

KWAME ALEXANDER shares stories from overcoming the NOs—winning the most prestigious children’s book award in America after five years of rejections from publishers—to dreaming the impossible—building a library and health clinic in Ghana, and everything in between—all by saying YES, to himself. ...

KWAME ALEXANDER shares stories from overcoming the NOs—winning the most prestigious children’s book award in America after five years of rejections from publishers—to dreaming the impossible—building a library and health clinic in Ghana, and everything in between—all by saying YES, to himself.

The Playbook: #BasketballRules for Life

Sports is a great metaphor for life. It is about how we prepare for the games in our fantastic and messy lives. In these games we decide who the best players are to assist us, and we test our skills on the court of life to help determine who we really are and what is most important to each of us. ...

Sports is a great metaphor for life. It is about how we prepare for the games in our fantastic and messy lives. In these games we decide who the best players are to assist us, and we test our skills on the court of life to help determine who we really are and what is most important to each of us.

Be Constructive with Your Blues

A talk on facing your fears, finding your voice, standing up for what’s right, and taking whatever situation you are faced with and making something constructive happen with it. Making your blues beautiful. ...

A talk on facing your fears, finding your voice, standing up for what’s right, and taking whatever situation you are faced with and making something constructive happen with it. Making your blues beautiful.

The Writerly Life

A bit of conversation, and a splash of performance as KWAME ALEXANDER shares what he’s learned from reading and writing poetry and children’s books. ...

A bit of conversation, and a splash of performance as KWAME ALEXANDER shares what he’s learned from reading and writing poetry and children’s books.

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Speaker News
<p><strong>#1 NYT bestseller Kwame Alexander’s powerful new memoir ‘Why Fathers Cry at Night’ began as a book of love poems, and became so much more </strong></p>

#1 NYT bestseller Kwame Alexander’s powerful new memoir ‘Why Fathers Cry at Night’ began as a book of love poems, and became so much more

In a stunning new memoir, #1 New York Times bestselling author and Newbery Medalist KWAME ALEXANDER shares poetry, letters, recipes, and more in an intimate look into his life – and the loved ones he shares it with. His new memoir, Why Fathers Cry at Night, began as a book of love poems and evolved into so much more. Kirkus Reviews offered a glowing review, writing: “Alexander connects disparate forms through his disarmingly forthright, humble voice, familiar vernacular, and optimism… This magnanimous hybrid-form memoir is rich with solace and wisdom.”

An intimate and non-tradition, “new-fashioned” memoir, Alexander’s book explores how to weave together memories of the past to understand our most important relationships today. In uplifting and insightful moderated conversations, and in keynote events full of wisdom, humor, and poetry, Kwame taps into the shared experiences that create understanding and foster empathy, connection, and hope.

Watch Kwame Alexander at the Library of Congress >>

<p><strong>With his new TV shows and brand-new upcoming trilogy, Kwame Alexander inspires audiences across mediums</strong></p>

With his new TV shows and brand-new upcoming trilogy, Kwame Alexander inspires audiences across mediums

Award-winning and New York Times bestselling author KWAME ALEXANDER inspires audiences across mediums with his dynamic storytelling and sought-after speaking. Kwame, who is a regular contributor to NPR’s Morning Edition and NPR’s Poet in Residence, is in high demand for his creative leadership and insights, from the star-studded new Disney+ series based on his bestselling novel of the same name, The Crossover, to a brand new reality series America’s Next Great Author, with Kwame hosting and executive producing through his company Big Sea Entertainment. As the Newbery Medalist shared in a riveting conversation with Publisher’s Weekly, the first book of his new trilogy, The Door of No Return, explores “wonder and woe, triumph and tragedy,” and presented an unprecedented challenge for him as a writer. Already the #1 New Release in its category on Amazon, the book explores the life and family of Kofi, an 11-year-old boy living in 19th century Ghana, tackling the history of the transatlantic slave trade from the perspective of a child. Kwame shares his creative journey and sense of responsibility in the compelling interview, in addition to giving the keynote address at the U.S. Book Show.

An internationally renowned poet, Kwame’s engaging talks and writing are an exploration of rhythm. For the Founding Editor of VERSIFY, poetry “allows me to talk about really heavy, expansive things in a few words.” Having delivered hundreds of riveting keynote speeches for corporations, educational institutions, commencements, and annual organization conferences such as Hallmark, Qualtrics, Kidscreen, Teachers College Columbia University, OpenText, and The International Literacy Association, Kwame offers spell binding and illuminating remarks on creativity, resilience, and unstoppable hope.

Watch Kwame Alexander’s Publisher’s Weekly interview >>

Watch Kwame Alexander’s conversation with the Kenney Center >>

<p><strong>Kwame Alexander entrances audiences with spoken word poetry and the power of YES!</strong></p>

Kwame Alexander entrances audiences with spoken word poetry and the power of YES!

New York Times Bestselling author, poet, and educator KWAME ALEXANDER elevates his inspiring stories and experiences into a spoken word performance. In his riveting speech The Power of Yes, Kwame shares stories from overcoming the NOs - such as receiving five years of rejections from publishers - by saying YES to himself. He teaches audiences how they can say YES to their own lives even when everyone else is telling them no, all the while using spoken word poetry to give his presentation a unique and beautiful flow. Audiences are captivated and inspired as Alexander winds his words around them for a remarkable and memorable experience. 

Watch his TEDx Talk The Power of Yes > >

<p><strong>Poet and novelist Kwame Alexander offers <em>a thousand words on race and hope</em> in his latest lyric work</strong></p>

Poet and novelist Kwame Alexander offers a thousand words on race and hope in his latest lyric work

Award-winning novelist and poet KWAME ALEXANDER writes to inspire his readers, often young adults and children, to face the world boldly and strive to create the type of world in which they wish to live. Often using sports and music as entry points for his stories, and often writing in a lyrical, poetic style, Alexander is a favorite speaker among school groups, colleges, and youth development programs. Light for the World to See is a powerful and provocative collection of poems that cut to the heart of the entrenched racism and oppression in America and eloquently explores ongoing events. A book in the tradition of James Baldwin’s A Report from Occupied Territory, Light for the World to See is a rap session on race. A lyrical response to the struggles of Black lives in our world... to America’s crisis of conscience... to the centuries of loss, endless resilience, and unstoppable hope.

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Books by Kwame Alexander
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Biography

Kwame Alexander is a poet, educator, Emmy-winning producer, and #1 New York Times Bestselling author of 40 books, including This Is The Honey: An Anthology of Contemporary Black Poets, Why Fathers Cry at Night, An American Story, The Door of No Return, Becoming Muhammad Ali (co-authored with James Patterson), Rebound, which was shortlisted for the prestigious UK Carnegie Medal, and The Undefeated, the National Book Award nominee, Newbery Honor, and Caldecott Medal-winning picture book illustrated by Kadir Nelson.

Kwame is also the Emmy-winning Executive Producer, Showrunner, and Writer of The Crossover TV series, based on his Newbery-Medal winning novel of the same name, which premiered on Disney+ in April 2023. The series was produced in partnership with LeBron James' SpringHill Company and Big Sea Entertainment, Kwame's production company that is dedicated to creating innovative, highly original children’s and family entertainment. Other current projects in development at Big Sea include America’s Next Great Author, the groundbreaking reality television series for writers.

A regular contributor to NPR’s Morning Edition, Kwame is the creator and host of the Why Fathers Cry podcast, premiering September 2023, featuring conversations about love and parenting and loss, with fathers and sons. He regularly shares his passion for literacy, books and the craft of writing around the world at events like the Chautauqua Lecture Series, the Edinburgh Book Festival, Aspen Ideas, and the Global Literacy Symposium in Ghana, where he opened the Barbara E. Alexander Memorial Library and Health Clinic in Ghana. Most recently he was appointed the Rudell Artistic Director of Literary Arts and Writer-in-Residence at the Chautauqua Institution.

His mission is to change the world, one word at a time.