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Announcing Lambda Literary’s Next Executive Director

Announcing Lambda Literary’s Next Executive Director

Author: Lambda Literary

September 12, 2022

I am thrilled to share with you that – following a 4-month nationwide search conducted by executive recruiting firm, CooperColeman LLC – acclaimed/award-winning poet and writer Samiya Bashir will be joining Lambda Literary as our next Executive Director!

Samiya is a prolific poet, artist, writer, performer, educator, and advocate. She has extensive roots within the communities she will be serving and was previously on the Board of Fire & Ink, a nonprofit devoted to increasing the understanding, visibility, and awareness of the works of LGBTQ+ writers of African descent and heritage, for more than 15 years. 

Samiya is the author of three poetry collections, most recently Field Theories, winner of the 2018 Oregon Book Award’s Stafford/Hall Award for Poetry. Her first book, Role Call: A Generational Anthology of Social and Political Black Art & Literature, was published by Third World Press, the oldest independent publisher of Black literature, and she was later one of the first poets to be published by RedBone Press, which has been dedicated to raising the voices of Black LGBTQ+ authors for 25 years. Samiya herself is also a two-time Lambda Literary Awards finalist!

“Samiya Bashir is a walking library of knowledge and with a history of literary service that now spans 25 years. I can think of no one more qualified to lead our cherished Lambda!”

– Jericho Brown

Throughout 2021, Lambda Literary underwent a community-driven strategic planning process, which resulted in a Roadmap for the organization’s future. Samiya will now steward that Roadmap, while creating opportunities to apply her own distinctive vision and holding space for ongoing community input. Samiya’s three decades of service in and to literary, arts, and LGBTQ+ communities uniquely position her to understand the needs of the organization’s constituencies. Samiya’s initial team-building focus is dedicated to creating a supportive, service-oriented place to work for LGBTQ+ writers, readers, publishers, bookstore owners, and professionals.

You will be hearing from Samiya in the coming days, weeks, and months – and I know she too will be looking to hear from you. For now, I hope you will join me in giving a warm welcome to Samiya.


Roz Lee
Board Chair, Lambda Literary

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