U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera is the featured guest speaker at the Saint Mary’s College Leadership for Social Justice Conference “Living Truths: Migrating Voices,” on Saturday, Nov. 21.
Herrera was named the 2015 poet laureate by the Library of Congress this summer and is the first Latino to receive the nation’s highest honor for poetry.
The son of migrant farm workers, Herrera will deliver the keynote presentation for the Living Truths: Migrating Voices conference, which focuses on issues such as the politics of immigration in the United States, the refugee crisis in Europe and preparing Saint Mary’s and Bay Area college students.
Herrera has written over a dozen poetry collections, including Half the World in Light: New and Selected Poems, which received the National Book Critics Circle Award and the International Latino Book Award. He is also a celebrated young adult and children’s book author.
His honors include the Américas Award for both Cinnamon Girl: letters found inside a cereal box and Crashboomlove: A Novel in Verse, as well as the Independent Publisher Book Award for Featherless/Desplumado, the Ezra Jack Keats Award for Calling the Doves, and the Pura Belpré Author Honor Award for both Portraits of Hispanic American Heroes and Laughing Out Loud, I Fly.
Herrera served as the chair of the Chicano and Latin American Studies Department at California State University, Fresno, held the Tomas Rivera Endowed Chair in the Creative Writing Department at the University of California, Riverside and is currently a visiting professor in the Department of American Ethnic Studies at the University of Washington, Seattle.
Herrera’s presentation will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. at the Soda Center, Saint Mary’s College, 1928 St. Mary’s Road, Moraga.
For more information, visit stmarys-ca.edu/LSJCONFERENCE or contact Ryan Lamberton at (925) 631-4015 or at [email protected].