Michelle Dartis

Independent Historian

A native of Indianapolis, Indiana, Michelle Dartis is a freelance writer who currently serves as a book reviewer for the American Library Association/GLBT-Roundtable’s online newsletter. She has also served on the editorial board of The Indianapolis Star’s IN-Touch blog and for The Village Griot, an online newsletter publication of the Asante Children’s Theatre of Indianapolis.

A lifelong learner, Michelle has a bachelor’s degree in social work and a master’s degree in library science, both from Indiana University. In October 2011, she began a second graduate program in higher education, specializing in leadership for student success. Michelle completed her degree in June 2013 with a 4.0 grade point average.

Michelle is the recipient of various awards, including the Indiana Librarians Leading in Diversity MLS Fellowship Project and the American Library Association/Spectrum Institute REACH 21 Scholarship Initiative.  She has over twenty years of professional experience in mental health and developmental disabilities, most notably as a Qualified Mental Retardation Professional.

In 2009, she co-founded and served as the vice president of the Indianapolis Book Festival, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose goal is to promote reading and improve literacy in the Indianapolis area. She served in this role until moving to Kalamazoo, Michigan in September 2012. In August 2013, Michelle accepted an instructor position at Spring Arbor University where she will begin teaching English and writing and research classes in the fall of 2013.

Michelle is also working on her first novel, which she hopes to complete in 2013.

Willie Hobbs Moore (1934-1994)

Image Ownership: Public domain ENTRY SPONSOR: William L. Katz Moore has the distinction of being the first African American woman to earn a doctorate in Physics, granted to her from the University of Michigan in 1972. Moore was born in Atlantic City, New Jersey on May 23, 1934.  In 1952, … Read MoreWillie Hobbs Moore (1934-1994)

Gloria Twine Chisum (1930- )

Image Ownership: Public domain ENTRY SPONSOR: Juli Farris An experimental psychologist, Gloria Twine Chisum is primarily known for developing protective eyewear for pilots in extreme conditions. Chisum was born in Muskogee, Oklahoma in 1930. She grew up in Muskogee but then attended Howard University where she earned an undergraduate degree in psychology … Read MoreGloria Twine Chisum (1930- )

Jackie “Moms” Mabley (1894–1975)

"Image Ownership: Public Domain" Jackie “Moms” Mabley found fame and fortune as a stand-up comedian during the twentieth century. Beginning as a staple on the chitlin’ circuit and late night talk show favorite, she went on to become an internationally known entertainer whose career spanned … Read MoreJackie “Moms” Mabley (1894–1975)

Kelvin Atkinson (1969- )

"Image Ownership: Public Domain" A Democratic member of the Nevada Senate, Kelvin Atkinson made history in April 2013 by becoming the fifth openly LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) member, and the first black gay member of the Nevada legislature.  He revealed his sexual orientation during … Read MoreKelvin Atkinson (1969- )

Wanda Evans Coleman (1946-2013)

Image Ownership: Public Domain" Wanda Evans Coleman was an American poet and writer who won critical acclaim for her avant-garde work, but remained relatively unknown to a broader audience. Her 30 year literary career included a myriad of poetry and fiction publications. Born and raised … Read MoreWanda Evans Coleman (1946-2013)

Sherman Alexander Hemsley (1938-2012)

"Image Ownership: Public Domain" American actor Sherman Alexander Hemsley was an Air Force veteran and postal worker before becoming a television actor. He is best known for his role as George Jefferson on the CBS television series All in the Family, The Jeffersons, and as … Read MoreSherman Alexander Hemsley (1938-2012)

André Leon Talley (1949-)

"Image Ownership: Public Domain" Known as one of the fashion world’s most recognized personalities, Talley stepped down as Vogue’s editor-at-large after three decades to become the editor-in-chief for Numero Russia, an international magazine based in Russia. Talley is the son of William C. Talley, a … Read MoreAndré Leon Talley (1949-)