Debra Powell-Wright, founder of FOR WOMEN COLLECTIVE, began her journey as a writer after having received second place in the “Sonia Sanchez/Audre Lorde Poetry Writing Award” competition, in 1997. Her professional artistic career began in November 2000, with In The Company of Poets, a Philadelphia-based spoken word ensemble. Publications in which Debra’s poems have been featured include Drum Voices Review, Essence Magazine, The African, Check the Rhyme: An Anthology of Female Poets & Emcees, and BMa: The Sonia Sanchez Literary Review. In 2008, her essay “Four Women—For Women: Black Women All Grown Up” was published in the anthology, Imagining the Black Female Body: Reconciling Image in Print and Visual Culture. In December 2012, with funding from the Leeway Foundation, she self-published For Women: In Tribute to Nina Simone, a collection of short stories and poems by twenty-six authors of color from across the African Diaspora.Prior to becoming a performance poet and teaching artist, Debra served as a volunteer tutor for the Mayor’s Commission on Literacy, and a volunteer instructor of GED English for Temple University’s Pan African Studies Community Education Program.