Hannah L Drake

Hannah L Drake is a blogger, activist, public speaker, poet, and the author of 10 books. She writes commentary on politics, feminism, and race and her work has been featured in Cosmopolitan Magazine. In 2019 during Super Bowl Sunday, Hannah’s poem, “All You Had To Do Was Play The Game, Boy,” which addresses the protest by Colin Kaepernick, was shared by film writer, producer and director Ava DuVernay, and then shared by Kaepernick. The poem has been viewed more than two million times. Hannah’s commentary on life and challenging others to dream bigger have been recognized by First Lady Michelle Obama. Hannah Drake was featured on the Tom Joyner Morning Show with Jacque Reid to discuss her international movement, Do Not Move Off the Sidewalk, which addresses the power of holding your space. In February 2019, Hannah was selected by the Muhammad Ali Center to be a Daughter of Greatness which features prominent women engaged in social philanthropy, activism, and pursuits of justice. Recently Hannah was selected as one of the Best of the Best in Louisville, Kentucky for her poem Spaces. Hannah’s message is thought-provoking and at times challenging, but Hannah believes that it is in the uncomfortable spaces that change can take place. “My sole purpose in writing and speaking is not that I entertain you. I am trying to shake a nation.”

Richard Taylor

Richard Taylor, a former Kentucky poet laureate, has published over a dozen books, including two novels, six or eight collections of poetry, and several books relating to Kentucky history.  His most recent publication is Elkhorn: Evolution of a Kentucky Landmark, University Press of Kentucky, 2018. Larkspur Press will print his ms. Bull’s Hell: Sonnets on the Life of Cassius Marcellus Clay and UPK will re-print his novel Girty in the fall of 2020. He is Kenan Visiting Writer at Transylvania and co-owns Poor Richard’s Books in Frankfort where he makes his home.

Jeff Worley

Jeff Worley, the current poetry laureate of Kentucky, is the author of six books and four chapbooks of poetry, as well as an anthology from University Press of Kentucky titled What Comes Down to Us: 25 Contemporary Kentucky Poets. His book The Only Time There Is won the Mid-List Press first-book competition. His second, Happy Hour at the Two Keys Tavern, was named co-winner of the Society of Midland Authors Literary Competition, was awarded the 2006 Kentucky Book of the Year in Poetry, and nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Worley has received numerous other awards for his writing, including three Al Smith Fellowships from the Kentucky Arts Council and a National Endowment Creative Writing Fellowship. Jeff’s newest collection, Lucky Talk, is from Broadstone Books. He and his wife, Linda, divide their time between Lexington and their cabin at Cave Run Lake.