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The Team

Board Of Directors

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AKoldPieceOfWork

Father, Educator, Writer, Poet, Spoken-word Artist & Host

He is a graduate of UCLA with a B.A. in History. This gentle giant has a special gift for creating haiku and short stories accented with his wit and humble personality. AKoldPiece has traveled as far as the motherland "Afraka" to share his artistry. Inspired by the legacy of his father and the future for his sun, AKP, which he is called by many, continues to embrace the unknown, where he finds solace in knowing that the unknown and uncomfortable is where true growth resides. Growing up, AKP stuttered tremendously and was uncomfortable communicating because of it. This caught the attention of his father who told him "to write down what he wanted to say" because when he was reading, his father noticed he did not stutter. In that moment, AKP became a writer. AKP began studying the dictionary and reading every book he can get his hands on. Yet, it wasn’t until his dad transitioned that he wrote his first poem entitled "A 12 Page Suicide Letter" in which he dealt with the unexpected passing of his beloved father. Since, AKP has written a wealth of poems, short stories and Haiku. He is also a published author of the recently released book called "The Weather Report." A book of haiku and what he calls myku. He has also become a well-respected host for his ability to weave his friendly demeanor and humor into his stage time. As a poet, AKP has featured at Black Broncos Rock for Cal Poly Pomona, The Black History Celebration at L.A. Southwest College, The Poetry Festival at Cal State Monterey Bay Flight School (formerly Natural High) of Culver City CA, Xpressions Open Mic of Long Beach CA, and Wednesday Night Snaps of Long Beach CA, Melodic Mondays of Los Angeles CA, Still Waters of Los Angeles CA, PoEx of Los Angeles, Ca, The Gathering of Los Angeles, Ca, SpeakEasy of Los Angeles, Ca. The Soundtrack of Los Angeles, Ca, Funtastic Fridays Infusion Lounge Of Los Angeles, Ca, The TakeOver inside of The JSpot Comedy Club of Los Angeles, Ca, The Extravaganza of Hollywood, Ca, Guess Lecturer for Community Literature Initiative of Los Angeles, Ca, Red Stories, S.W.A.A.M. Inglewood, Ca, Los Angeles, Ca, Poets & Allies, Pasadena, Ca Pasadena Lit fest, Pasadena, Ca Off The Self (Pop up art and live music) Los Angeles City Library, Ca, A Mic and Dim Lights, Pomona, Ca 3rd Sunday Promenade Gallery Open Mic, Pomona, Ca. He is an instructor for Engage (The Art of Active Living) that teaches poetry to elders inside of senior citizens facilities through out Los Angeles County and he teaches creative writing and chess at View Park High School. AKP hosting credits include "Le' Boule," a poetry production in Los Angeles, S.W.A.A.M. Burn This Bridge, Poets Feed The People Speak Easy Open Mic. He has co-hosted at Poets Jazz House, World Stage Anasi Writers Workshop, Flight School Open Mic, On Higher Ground, host for Thursday Night Vibes, BLOG Lyrical Origami, the host for Frozen Vibes, currently the host For Poetry, Friends and Drinks and Co-host The Spot Open Mic. AKP has found a unique way to be a host and poet, a special skill that is similar to an athlete excelling in two sports. In this place of stretch, we acknowledge and appreciate AKoldPiece for what he’s continuing to grow into: A-Kolder-Piece of work!!!

Mo Piquette Haynes (she/her/hers)

CLI Board Secretary - Sims Library of PoetryArts Advocate and Administrator | Author | Actress

Maureen "Mo" Piquette Haynes graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Hofstra University in New York. She is a mom, arts advocate, Administrative Manager of The Actors' Gang Prison Project, actress, poet, and author of Born to Waltz: I Was a Girl a Woman Ago published by World Stage Press in 2015. Her poem Did I happen to you or you to me? is featured as a dramatic monologue in the Creative Writing Course Reader: These Pages Speak. In 2007, she penned its first words and performed it as a monologue for the ReachLA Women's Writing Workshop. Four years later, the monologue was adapted as she found her voice in verse on mics around Los Angeles, which led her to the Community Literature Initiative (CLI). She participated as a student in season one of the CLI publishing class and continued the work as a teaching assistant (TA) for one year. During her time as a TA, Born to Waltz was published and developed into a poetry show called Feathered directed by Arianna Lady Basco. While serving as a CLI Board Member for three years, CLI launched The Living Writers Series at The Los Angeles Film School and Foshay Learning Center, which she co-managed until June 2017. In 2020, CLI received a grant from the California Humanities foundation to cover the tuition for two CLI Poets in need, and the scholarship was named in Maureen's honor. Every year, the scholarship will be given to one student in each class.  ​ Her work is with people across Los Angeles who recognize the power of art is in the process. She aligns her work with organizations that focus on access to the arts and apply the medium of art to impact social change. In June of 2018, The Actors' Gang became her new home, where she can support a mission to establish a supportive community and center the voices of systems-impacted people through the arts. She is honored to serve on the CLI Board of Directors for the Sims Library of Poetry.

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Jamelle Nelson

Jamelle Nelson, CPA is the Managing Director with Nelson & Associates Corp., specializing in accounting, tax, and advisory services for real estate investors and companies. Jamelle leverages his skills and wisdom developed during his nearly 15-year career in accounting to ensure he has a deep understanding of specific client requirements. This includes identifying with and understanding client compliance, strategy, growth and advancement opportunities. ​ Jamelle began his career in public accounting with KPMG Los Angeles, where he focused on auditing and providing financial reporting to some of the top publicly traded companies. ​ As a leader, Jamelle has expertise in strategic planning, budgeting, building teams, growth, revenue enhancement, and driving profitability. He has also developed, supervised, and led accounting teams ranging from start-ups to high-growth and mature companies.

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