Ta-Nehisi Coates To Speak on Race in America at Kalamazoo Community Foundation Community Meeting

Monday, October 12, 2015
For Immediate Release
Contact: Tom Vance, 381-4416
 
Ta-Nehisi Coates To Speak on Race in America at
Kalamazoo Community Foundation Community Meeting
 
KALAMAZOO, Oct. 7, 2015 – Ta-Nehisi Coates, author of the current best-seller Between the World and Me, will be the keynote speaker at this year’s community meeting of the Kalamazoo Community Foundation, talking about race in America on Tuesday, Nov. 3, at 8 p.m., at Miller Auditorium on Western Michigan University’s campus.
 
The event is free and open to the public; however, registrations are required at www.kalfound.org or by calling 269-381-4416. Parking is also free at the Miller Auditorium ramp. 
 
“Mr. Coates delivers a powerful historical perspective of the impact that systemic racial discrimination has had on our country,” says Community Foundation President/CEO Carrie Pickett-Erway. “This event is an opportunity for our community to deepen our understanding of and acknowledge this reality. Many people and organizations in Kalamazoo County have been working on racial disparities for decades. This event can add momentum to the conversations and work that is already happening in our community.”
 
According to Pickett-Erway, “It is the Community Foundation’s hope that, upon hearing his message, people will reflect, and join in these important conversations. We cannot be the community we believe we are until discrimination no longer exists and every person has the opportunity to reach full potential.”
 
Sponsored by PNC Bank, his talk is also a part of WMU University Center for the Humanities’ 2015-2016 speaker series, “Reimagining Communities.” 
 
Coates is a national correspondent for The Atlantic magazine, where he writes about culture, politics and social issues. He is also Journalist-in-Residence at the School of Journalism at City University of New York. His 2008 memoir, The Beautiful Struggle, described his childhood in Baltimore, and his recently released Between the World and Me takes the form of a letter to his 15-year-old son about growing up as a black man in America. 
 
Between the World and Me is a finalist for the National Book Award. Coates, who previously served as Martin Luther King Visiting Associate Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is the recipient of the National Magazine Award, the Hillman Prize for Opinion and Analysis in Journalism, and the George Polk Award for Commentary. His blog at The Atlantic was named by Time magazine as one of the best 25 in the world. 
 
In 2014 he authored the cover story for The Atlantic, “The Case for Reparations,” and the October 2015 issue of the magazine features his cover story, “The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration.” 
 
According to the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, which recently announced Coates as a recipient of the MacArthur ‘Genius’ Award, Coates “brings personal reflection and historical scholarship to bear on America’s most contested issues” and “is emerging as a leading interpreter of American concerns to a new generation of media-savvy audiences and having a profound impact on the discussion of race and racism in this country.”
 
Kalamazoo Community Foundation, established in 1925, is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year. Its mission is to make life better for all through leadership and stewardship of resources that last forever, and its vision is a community where every person can reach full potential. For more information visit www.kalfound.org.