Louis Reyes Rivera
Known as the "Janitor of History," poet/essayist Louis Reyes Rivera has been studying his craft since 1960 and teaching it since 1969. The recipient of over 20 awards, including a Lifetime Achievement Award (1995), a Special Congressional Recognition Award (1988), and the CCNY 125th Anniversary Medal (1973), Rivera has assisted in the publication of well over 200 books, including John Oliver Killens' Great Black Russian (Wayne State U., 1989), Adal Maldonado's Portraits of the Puerto Rican Experience (IPRUS, 1984), and Bum Rush The Page: A Def Poetry Jam (Crown Publishers, 2001).
Considered by many as a necessary bridge between the African and Latino American communities, he is a professor of Pan-African, African-American, Caribbean and Puerto Rican literature and history whose essays and poems have appeared in numerous publications, including Areyto, Boletin, The City Sun, African Voices, and in five award-winning collections: In Defense of Mumia; ALOUD: Live from the Nuyorican Poets Cafe, Of Sons And Lovers, Bum Rush The Page, and his own Scattered Scripture.
Since 1996, Rivera continues to host a bi-monthly 1st & 3rd Sundays Jazzoetry & Open Mic @ Sistas' Place (where he also conducts his writing workshop), in Brooklyn, and has appeared in Jazz clubs and festivals with The Sun Ra All-Stars Project, Ahmed Abdullah's Diaspora, and his own band, The Jazzoets. He has recently appeared on C-SPAN, as part of the REPARATIONS NOW! rally held in Washington, D.C., this past August 17th, and on Russell Simmons' DEF POETRY on HBO. Currently, Louis Reyes Rivera can be heard every Thursday, at 2pm, on radio station WBAI (99.5 FM), hosting his own weekly show, PERSPECTIVE.