Who is Amanda Gorman?

If you watched the inauguration of Joseph Biden, then you have already been introduced to Amanda Gorman. She was the inaugural poet and recited her poem “The Hill We Climb” in front of thousands of people on live television. She immediately became a focus point for many viewers because of her captivating words and bright yellow jacket. Not to mention, her popularity has only grown since then, and this exposure caused many organizations to reach out to her. Now, at 22 years old, she has signed with IMG Models for a modeling contract and is set to recite a poem at the upcoming SuperBowl. 

 

Gorman grew up in Los Angeles, California and was raised by a single mother along with her two siblings. Growing up, Gorman struggled with a speech impediment and auditory processing disorder that made her sensitive to sound. When talking about her struggles with speech and sound to the Harvard Gazette in 2018, Gorman says,” I always saw it as a strength because since I was experiencing these obstacles in terms of my auditory and vocal skills, I became really good at reading and writing. I realized that at a young age when I was reciting the Marianne Deborah Williamson quote that ‘Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure’ to my mom.”

 

In 2014, at age 16, Gorman was named the Youth Poet Laureate of Los Angeles, and released a collection of poetry titled “The One for Whom Food Is Not Enough” in 2015. Two years later, she was named the nation's first ever Youth Poet Laureate and wrote an amazing piece called “In This Place: An American Lyric.” A lot of Gorman’s poems deal with social commentary, whether it's about race, gender, climate change, etc. Gorman always has something profound and thought provoking to say. 

 

Gorman attended Harvard University to study Sociology and graduated cum laude in 2020. Her career in poetry has won her multiple awards and invitations to speak at events. It will be interesting to watch her over the next coming years to see how far her poetry and activism will take her!