I am happy to report that Kevin Young will be joining NYPL as Director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. He will begin his tenure at the Library in the late fall. Kevin succeeds Khalil Gibran Muhammad, who led the Schomburg with great distinction for the last five years.
Kevin joins NYPL from Emory University, where he was both Curator of the Raymond Danowski Poetry Library and Curator of Literary Collections at the newly named Rose Library. He simultaneously held the Charles Howard Candler Professorship of Creative Writing and English. Under Kevin’s leadership, the Danowski Poetry Library and the Rose Library have both enjoyed remarkable success, increasing their holdings, expanding public programming and access, mounting innovative exhibitions, organizing conferences and fellowship competitions, and enhancing their digital presence. Among his notable curatorial acquisitions were the Lucille Clifton, Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs, Marie Ponsot, Sarah E. Wright, and Nathaniel Mackey archives, and in collaboration with his colleagues, the addition of W.E.B. Du Bois’s copy of David Walker’s Appeal to the Colored Citizens of the World.
During his 11 years at Emory, Kevin produced a wide-ranging corpus of poetry and cultural criticism. He has published 11 books and edited eight others. In February, Knopf published Blue Laws: Selected and Uncollected Poems 1995-2015. His influential volume of cultural criticism, The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness, won the PEN Open Book Award, was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism, and was named a New York Times Notable Book. His Book of Hours (Knopf, 2014) was a finalist for the Kingsley Tufts Award and winner of the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize from the Academy of American Poets; Jelly Roll (Knopf, 2003) was a finalist for the National Book Award.
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