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Saturday 16.11.19 from 13:30 to 14:30



WriteGirl Executive Director, Keren Taylor, has been an afterschool program director and trainer for more than 25 years. She founded WriteGirl in 2001 and has overseen WriteGirl’s expansion into a thriving community of women and teen writers that helps hundreds of youth annually. Under Keren’s direction, WriteGirl has published 33 award-winning anthologies of youth writing and received the 2013 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, the highest national honor awarded to exemplary after-school programs. Keren serves on the board of the Arts for Incarcerated Youth Network (AIYN) and directs WriteGirl’s programming for incarcerated and systems-impacted teens provided through the WriteGirl/Bold Ink Writers Program. In 2018, Keren became one of 12 women leaders and entrepreneurs invited to serve as a member of the Barbie Global Advisory Council to help shape Mattel, Inc.’s “Evolution of Barbie.” Keren was a 2014 CNN Hero and has received the Humanitas Prize, the President's Volunteer Call to Service Award and commendations from the Los Angeles mayor’s office. Keren holds a Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations from the University of British Columbia, a Piano Performance Degree from the Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto, and a Diploma from the American Music and Dramatic Academy, NYC.

WriteGirl Managing Director, Katie Geyer, manages day-to-day operations, internal and external communications, membership services and all aspects of mentoring programs, and assists in strategic planning, staff development and overall program planning. Katie spearheads publicity for WriteGirl and has garnered media coverage from USA Today, Good Morning America online, the Los Angeles Times, The Hollywood Reporter, Variety and iHeartRadio. Katie joined WriteGirl as a volunteer in 2012 and brings valuable insight to this position, having served as both a staff member and mentor. She continues to work with her WriteGirl mentee, who graduated from the University of Pennsylvania on a full scholarship. Katie has a Master’s in Journalism from Boston University and a BA in Communication Studies from UCLA. She worked for several years as a political reporter and assistant editor for a daily newspaper and has been published in several magazines.

WriteGirl Alumna Sara Kimura received a Bachelor's Degree in Film Studies from Pepperdine University and a Certificate in Conflict Management from the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution. While attending Pepperdine, Sara studied and volunteered as a part of cultural programs in Jordan and Russia, and also worked as a Spiritual Life Advisor to students in the residence halls. After graduating, Sara began volunteering as a WriteGirl mentor, while working as an editor and ghostwriter at an independent publishing company in Los Angeles. Sara is currently the Writers' PA for a new TV show on Fox called Almost Family and is pursuing a career in TV & Film writing.

WriteGirl Alumna Janel Pineda is a poet, activist and educator. She is a founding editor and translator for La Piscucha Magazine, a recently released multilingual arts, literature and culture magazine created by Salvadoran writers. Janel has performed her poetry internationally in both English and Spanish, and been published in Latino Book Review, wildness and The Wandering Song: Central American Writing in the United States, among others. Janel’s work as a poet has also been featured in The Huffington Post, Teen Vogue, Los Angeles Magazine, and VoyageLA, among others. In 2016, Janel completed a 10-week internship in the WriteGirl office to create the organization’s first ever Impact Report. She is a Marshall Scholar currently pursuing dual master’s degrees in creative writing and migration studies in the UK.

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