Holy Family University Distinguished Writers Series Hosts Former Philadelphia Poet Laureate Yolanda Wisher

Holy Family University will launch the fourth year of its Distinguished Writers Series when it welcomes former Philadelphia Poet Laureate Yolanda Wisher on Wednesday, October 4, 2023, at 6:30 p.m. in the Education and Technology Center Auditorium (9801 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19114).

The event is FREE and open to public.

The Distinguished Writers Series is led by assistant professor and program director Keith Kopka, Ph. D. and assistant professor Raena Shirali.

Wisher is the author of Monk Eats an Afro and co-editor of the anthology Peace is a Haiku Song with mentor Sonia Sanchez. She was named the inaugural Poet Laureate of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania in 1999 and the third Poet Laureate of Philadelphia for 2016 and 2017. Wisher teaches poetry workshops for all ages in a variety of settings.

“We are thrilled to continue Holy Family’s Distinguished Writers Series as it offers an opportunity for our students to gain exposure to and knowledge from a diverse group of accomplished writers,” Kopka said.  “The series bolsters our Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program and offers a unique opportunity for personal interaction and discussion.”

Previous artists featured in the series include: R.O. Kwon, Ananda Lima, Raquel Salas Rivera, Carmen Maria Machado, Krys Malcolm Belc, Airea D. Matthews and Torrey Pines, among others.

The Holy Family University Distinguished Writers Series is committed to bringing visiting authors and scholars to the Northeast Philadelphia campus each academic year for free, public readings and student-centered events as a way to promote diversity and social awareness. Through its dedication to the Holy Family University mission and core values of community, respect, integrity, experiential learning, vision and service, the Distinguished Writers Series offers an intellectual environment that fosters the free exchange of ideas with writers, scholars and thinkers of different backgrounds, ethnicities, viewpoints, and writing styles.

Members of the public who wish to attend the Distinguished Writers Series event virtually are asked to register here.

For those wishing to attend in person, no registration is required. We ask that you arrive at the Education and Technology Center on Holy Family's Philadelphia campus by 6:15 p.m.

About Holy Family University
Holy Family University is a private institution in the Catholic tradition with campus locations in Philadelphia and Newtown, PA. Founded in 1954, the University is informed by its values-driven mission. Holy Family embraces diversity and inclusion, ensuring a welcoming and accessible learning community for all. The University comprises four schools: Arts & Sciences, Business & Technology, Education, and Nursing & Health Sciences. Nestled in the heart of a historic residential neighborhood in Northeast Philadelphia, and a bucolic setting in Bucks County, the University is just minutes from the excitement of Center City. Holy Family enrolls more than 3,600 students at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral levels and was rated the 2023 Safest College in Philadelphia by Niche.com.

Holy Family University is a sponsored ministry of the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth. 


Jan Giel