Stephen Jamal Leeper is a writer, educator, and nonprofit consultant. Above all, he is a believer. He believes in the power of words, of story, of dreaming, of activism, of community, of people, of the Creator. A city kid from the South and raised mostly by women, he was taught early on of the dogged persistence of Black folks. From sharecropping on a Waxhaw plantation, from one room shotgun schools, from alcoholism and drug addiction, from a family of five in a two bed room apartment in the projects, from soup kitchens and food stamps, from debt and bad credit. From all of that we've come out still laughing, still smiling, still loving, still fighting.
Stephen graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a BA in Psychology. In May 2015, he graduated from California College of the Arts with a MFA in Creative Writing. His writing is an interdisciplinary exploration of racial identity and memory through a collaging of poetry, myth, narrative and images. He is currently an Ethnic Studies teacher at Aptos Middle School in San Francisco, CA. He has led writing workshops at his school resulting in the publication of a school anthology of student essays, poetry, and fiction. Stephen lives in the SF Bay Area with his wife Aïdah and daughter Solène.