Shari LeKane-Yentumi

  • Poet, Writer, Consultant
  • Language Arts
  • 2002

Bio

Shari Jo LeKane-Yentumi lives in St. Louis, Missouri, where she writes poetry, prose and articles, and specializes in literary criticism and non-profit matters. She has a B.A. in English, Spanish, and an M.A. in Spanish from Saint Louis University in Madrid and St. Louis. Since brain surgery, she teaches creative writing in a maximum security jail and to special needs students. She completed a novel in verse, Poem to Follow, a book of poetry, Fall Tenderly, and is featured in several poetry anthologies, including the Missouri VSA 2013 Anthology, Turning the Clocks Forward Again; Poetica Victorian; Red Dashboard Disorder Anthology: Mental Illness and Its Effects; Think Pink; The Muse India/Createspace Anthology Of Present Day Best Poems; Bordertown Press Poetry of People on the Move; The Society of Classical Poets; The Mas Tequila Review; Snapping Twig; and Literature Today International Journal of Contemporary Literature. Shari's poetry has appeared in several literary magazines in the U.S., Canada, England, India, Ireland, Spain and Wales. Shari graduated from CAT in 2002. She has a background in immigration law and not-for-profit formation and management. Shari is the former Director and a founding member of University City East, Inc. ("UCE"), a community organization dedicated to creating a healthy community in the eastern section of University City (1999-2006). The UCE mission was to implement innovative strategies that promoted systematic and long-term social change through community health initiatives and other programs in underserved areas. The Health Protection and Education Services provides free health screenings at the University City Public Library on the third Saturday of each month since 1999 and is still going strong to this day. Through her work with the St. Louis Children's Hospital Healthy Kids at Play Initiative, and with fellow CAT alum Solomon Thurman, they built two playgrounds with community art installations at Pershing Elementary School in University City . They also enhanced the UCE Summer Youth Leadership Training Program through the arts consisting of African drumming, multi-media workshops, creative writing, mediation training, collaboration with the Saint Louis Art Museum CAT Faculty Renee Franklin, and instruction by other CAT alum such as Solomon Thurman, Heidi Lung, CAT Faculty Jane Ellen Ibur, and Gay Lorberbaum.