Writer-in-Residence Cole Brown '14

Yesterday, SCH Dempsey Writer-in-Residence, Cole Brown '14, came to campus to talk with the Upper School community. One of the DEI Council leaders, Tatyana Hall '23, had the honor of introducing Brown: “Cole Brown is a political commentator, writer, and author of the book, Greyboy: Finding Blackness in a White World. The book received praise from Diddy, Queen Latifah, The New York Times, Forbes, and others for its honest examination of an under-explored side of the Black experience: that of Black kids maturing in predominantly white environments. Greyboy received an NAACP Image Award nomination for Outstanding Literary Work—Debut Author—and was selected for Steph Curry’s 'Underrated' Book Club. It is currently in TV development with ABC Signature and Yara Shahidi's 7th Sun production company with Cole as an Executive Producer.” 

Brown started his day at SCH in Mr. Zalasky's American Stories Honors class and continued in the Henry Library for a fireside chat with the Student Leaders of DEI Council about his experiences at predominantly white institutions (PWI). They discussed the inspiration behind his book Greyboy and the upper school had the opportunity to ask Brown questions before they split into student facilitated social action workshops for Upper School’s second Moment of Understanding. Following the social action workshops, Brown hosted an Upper School writer’s workshop and gave away books to 25 lucky students. His final class was with his former teacher and mentor, Ms. Waleson, for AP Literature & Composition. 

Later in the afternoon, Brown sat down for tea with Debrah Dempsey and the English Department. The 'Dempsey Writer-in-Residence' endowed fund was established in 2000 in honor of Deborah Dempsey, Honorary Alumni, and English teacher at Springside for 29 years. The fund supports the residency of a professional writer, journalist, filmmaker, or playwright and celebrates Mrs. Dempsey's teaching legacy, ensuring that her passion for personal expression continues.

Cole followed up Greyboy by co-authoring his first memoir, First Impressions, with Matt James expected in May 2022. Click here to see more photos from the day.

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