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Rising Voice – Amanda Gorman

You may recognize her from this year’s inauguration day where she delivered her poem “The Hill We Climb.” Amanda Gorman is a 23-year-old poet and activist. She became the youngest poet to read at a presidential inauguration to date. Her works talk about oppression, feminism, racism, and marginalization. She has also recently written a poem on climate change. Raised by a single mother, Gorman and her two siblings had limited television access. During this time, she fostered her love of reading and writing. Gorman has an auditory processing disorder and is hypersensitive to sound which helped her focus on becoming extra good at reading and writing. She never let her disorder stop her and recognizes it as a strength rather than a weakness.

            She was inspired by Malala Yousafzai’s speech for the United Nations in 2013 to become a youth delegate. In 2016, she founded One Pen One Page, an organization for youth writing and leadership program. She has written countless poems, tributes, articles, and even books. Seeing her influence on others has made Gorman realize that she wants to pursue politics, stating that she intends on running for president in 2036. She was racially profiled by a security guard near her house and tweeted, “In a sense, he was right. I AM A THREAT: a threat to injustice, to inequality, to ignorance. Anyone who speaks the truth and walks with hope is an obvious and fatal danger to the powers that be. A threat and proud.” Amanda Gorman is a social justice advocate, a lover of the arts and culture, has an entrepreneurial spirit, and a voice that will be heard through the next generation.

Grace Greenwood