Junot Díaz is a Dominican American writer, creative writing professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology , and fiction editor at Boston Review. He also serves on the board of advisers for Freedom University, a volunteer organization in Georgia that provides post-secondary instruction to undocumented immigrants. Central to Díaz's work is the immigrant experience. He received the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for his novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao. He is a 2012 MacArthur Fellow.
Henry Louis "Skip" Gates Jr. is an American literary critic, teacher, historian, filmmaker and public intellectual who currently serves as the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University. He discovered what are considered the first books by African-American writers, both women, and has published extensively on appreciating African-American literature as part of the Western canon.
Jason Robert Brown is an American musical theatre composer, lyricist, and playwright. Brown's music sensibility fuses pop-rock stylings with theatrical lyrics. An accomplished pianist, Brown has often served as music director, conductor, orchestrator, and pianist for his own productions. He has won Tony Awards for his work on Parade and The Bridges of Madison County.
For most people, we often marvel at the beauty of a sunrise or the magnificence of a full moon, but it is impossible to fathom the magnitude of the universe that surrounds us.Richard H. Baker
As you age naturally, your family shows more and more on your face. If you deny that, you deny your heritage.Frances Conroy
I had gotten to a place where I truly believed everything I was called: 'not sexy,' 'not funny,' 'too intense,' desperate.' All those labels they gave me, I took them because there wasn't a trace of my true self left.Naomi Watts
Your competition is not other people but the time you kill, the ill will you create, the knowledge you neglect to learn, the connections you fail to build, the health you sacrifice along the path, your inability to generate ideas, the people around you who don't support and love your efforts, and whatever god you curse for your bad luck.James Altucher