Nicole Shawan Junior

headshot of Nicole Shawan Junior

Nicole Shawan Junior (they/them) is an arts administrator, community builder and justice-involved counter-storyteller. Prior to joining PEN America, they founded Roots. Wounds. Words.—an organization that provides BIPOC-led and -centered literary arts pedagogy, publication and performance opportunities. They also prosecuted police and domestic violence cases. Nicole’s writing appears in The Sentences That Create UsGuernicaThe RumpusThe Feminist WireZORAGay MagSLICE and elsewhere. They have received residencies and fellowships for their writing from Hedgebrook, Tin House, PERIPLUS, NYFA, Lambda Literary, and many more. They served as editor-in-chief of Black Femme Collective and on the editorial teams at Women’s Studies Quarterly of the Feminist Press and SLICE Magazine. Nicole curated a limited column that centered first-person narratives written by justice-involved mothers for Raising Mothers and guest edited at The Rumpus. When not reading, writing or creating literary arts opportunities, Nicole’s listening to Jay Z, pulling a tarot card, or flipping a large tire at a local Strongman gym.