Second annual Ashley Bryan Lecture set for July 14 

BAR HARBOR — Join award-winning poet Nikki Giovanni for The Second Annual Ashley Bryan Lecture on Thursday, July 14, at 6:30 p.m., sponsored by Jesup Memorial Library.  

Giovanni has published more than two dozen volumes of poetry, essays and edited anthologies, as well as 11 illustrated children’s books.  

 “My dream was not to publish or to even be a writer. My dream was to discover something no one else had thought of.  I guess that’s why I’m a poet. We put things together in ways no one else does,” Giovanni said. 

Giovanni has used her poetry to raise awareness of social issues, particularly those of gender and race. Pieces of her poetry were selected by Bryan to illustrate for the children’s book “I Am Loved.”  

Giovanni has received numerous awards, including the inaugural Rosa L. Parks Woman of Courage Award, the American Book Award, the Langston Hughes Award, the Virginia Governor’s Award for the Arts and the Emily Couric Leadership Award. Her album, “The Nikki Giovanni Poetry Collection,” was a Grammy finalist for the Best Spoken Word Album and her autobiography, “Gemini,” was a finalist for the 1973 National Book Award. She has won an unprecedented seven NAACP Image Awards.  

She is currently University Distinguished Professor at Virginia Tech, where she has taught since 1987. 

The Annual Ashley Bryan Lecture is named in honor of the late printmaker, author, puppet maker, painter, storyteller and illustrator Ashley Bryan, who devoted his life to bringing people together through art. This yearly lecture brings a distinguished artist or critic of color whose work reflects a deep interest in racial equity to discuss that work with the Downeast Maine community. 

For more information about the annual Ashley Bryan Lecture, visit 

To attend the lecture virtually, register online at 

Information on how to attend in person will be announced later this summer.