A Moderated Conversation with LeVar Burton
Legendary actor, storyteller, director, and literacy advocate LEVAR BURTON shares insights from his life and work in this engaging and motivational moderated conversation. Ranging from his iconic roles as an actor, to his commitment to children’s literacy, to new education technologies, Burton shares an unparalleled perspective in this memorable program.
In Conversation with LeVar Burton: Storytelling in the Digital Age - Making a Different in the Lives of Children
In this compelling moderated conversation, children’s education champion LEVAR BURTON brings light to the literacy problem in America, the future of the written word, and the impact of digital technologies on creativity, storytelling, and the future of children’s education.
In Conversation: The Power of Storytelling - Written, Spoken, Lived
In this inspiring and motivational conversation, LEVAR BURTON shares insights from his career as a legendary storyteller and offers lessons from his three storytelling mentors: Alex Haley, the creator of Roots, Gene Roddenberry, the creator of Star Trek, and Fred (Mister) Rogers. LeVar illuminates the influence of mentorship in his life, the impact great storytellers have on the world, and the power of the stories we tell ourselves in this memorable program.
In Conversation: Martin Luther King, Jr. - The Man and The Myth
One of the most famous quotes attributed to Dr. King is, "Our lives begin to end the day we remain silent about things that matter." The truth is, there is no evidence to support that he actually ever spoke those words. In his riveting moderated conversation, LEVAR BURTON explores the conflicting nature of the man who was Martin Luther King, Jr. as well as the mythical King of his legacy.
LeVar Burton shares the power of storytelling in sought-after events, receiving rave reviews
Award-winning actor, writer, producer, director, and renowned literacy advocate LEVAR BURTON is a globally renowned master of storytelling and audience engagement. In sought-after live and virtual events, Burton shares his approach to connecting authentically with any audience. Drawing on his tenure as the beloved face of children’s literacy as the host of Reading Rainbow, one of the longest-running children’s TV shows of all time and recipient of over 200 awards, the Peabody winner weaves together stories from his life and work with inspirational lessons about creativity, creating connection, and using storytelling to make a difference.
Burton consistently receives glowing reviews for all his events, such as:
LeVar Burton is a champion of children’s education and speaks about the importance of education and literacy for every child
Legendary actor LEVAR BURTON speaks frequently at top education events for groups such as NASA, ISTE, The National Education Association, and many more. He began his advocacy for education and literacy as host and executive producer of the well-known PBS children’s series, Reading Rainbow, which earned over 200 awards, including multiple Emmys and a Peabody, and was one of the longest-running children’s TV shows in history. He further committed to improving children’s education by creating RRKidz, a digital educational publishing company. He launched Skybrary, a digital reading service that adds new content weekly. Burton used Kickstarter to create an incredibly successful campaign to bring Reading Rainbow to “Every Child, Everywhere,” focusing on classrooms in need. Setting a crowdfunding record of its time, Burton was able to bring Skybrary to the web, making it accessible to the majority of American households as well as teachers and students. He continues his storytelling and advocacy work with his podcast LeVar Burton Reads, where he performs a piece of short fiction each episode.
LeVar Burton launched his acting career while still a student at the University of Southern California. At 19, he found himself on the cover of Time Magazine, after landing the groundbreaking role of Kunta Kinte in the landmark television series Roots. A seemingly impossible act to follow, Burton achieved further global acclaim as Chief Engineer Geordi La Forge in the iconic Star Trek: The Next Generation television series – a role he reprised in Star Trek: Picard in 2023. However, it has been his role as host and executive producer of the beloved PBS children’s series Reading Rainbow of which he is most proud. Airing from 1983 to 2009, it was not only one of the longest-running children’s television shows in history, but also one of the most acclaimed, earning over 200 awards including multiple Emmys and a Peabody.
As a lifelong literacy advocate, Burton has dedicated decades to encouraging children to read. In 2017, long-standing literacy non-profit, Reading is Fundamental, acquired Burton’s Skybrary reading app in order to provide access to millions of children both at home and at school. Always committed to improving children’s education through the latest pioneering technologies, Burton partnered with Osmo’s Reading Adventure, an innovative technology that uses speech recognition and digital storytelling to teach children to read. In 2023, Burton premiered his first documentary, The Right to Read, a film that positions the literacy crisis in America as a civil rights issue. The Right to Read was an official selection at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival and SXSW Edu.
Most recently, Burton launched LeVar Burton Entertainment (LBE) with a mission to create content that fosters empathy, champions diversity, and builds community. Under this banner, Burton develops projects in the film, television, podcasting, and publishing space. Now in its 11th season, the enormously popular LeVar Burton Reads podcast has over 175 episodes in its catalog, boasting 25 million downloads. LBE’s first Kids & Family podcast, Sound Detectives, will debut on Stitcher in July of 2023.
Burton continued to exercise his passion for storytelling as the award-winning author of Aftermath, The Rhino who Swallowed a Storm, and A Kids Book About Imagination. A modern-day griot, Burton launched his first book club with Fable, a digital book club community. In his partnership with Masterclass, Burton shared the power of storytelling by offering insights into his own life and the importance of authenticity, and dynamic expression.
As the honored recipient of six NAACP Awards, a Peabody, a Grammy, and 15 Emmys, including a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Inaugural Children’s & Family Emmys, Burton has demonstrated that he can do it all. He is often invited as a keynote speaker at leading education and technology events, including NASA, ISTE, The National Education Association, FAST COMPANY’s Innovation Series, and many more. In 2022, Burton was selected as the Tournament Of Roses Grand Marshal, ushering in the new year with the theme of “Dream. Believe. Achieve.”
With over 4 million social media followers, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and a dedicated park in his hometown of Sacramento, this pop culture icon has the unique ability to reach across all ages, ethnicities, and socioeconomic groups – communicating to a large fan base that is highly engaged and motivated to embrace his message.