Poet Information

Brian Donnell James

About the Poet

Brian Donnell James photo

Born in Alexandria, Virginia, Brian Donnell James is a poet, writer, and public speaker that has been published in Africa, Europe, and throughout the United States in several poetry anthologies, journals, and magazines. He is a 2020 “United Nations” award winning poet, as well as a National Poetry Month, Carolina Prize, Voices of Color, prize winning writer. A Poet Fellow for The Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing, He has been a featured poet at several universities including Penn State University, Howard University, George Mason University, Montana State University, The New School University NYC, Baltimore City College, among many others. His video performances and text has been discussed and analyzed as a part of an honors colloquium sponsored by Dr. Hiram Larew at Oregon State University as well as the University of Georgia.

He has served as a poetry judge for Penguin Random House, The Maryland Library System, The Golden Nib, We Need Diverse Books, The Gaithersburg Book Festival, and Poetically Correct Washington D.C. Brian has also spoken as an advocate for children's welfare on a wide spectrum including subjects ranging from adoption and autism, to teenage homelessness. He has been a featured speaker at the Hunger Free Communities Summit and the Global Learning in Agriculture Conference to combat food insecurity and fundraising charity events for the Covenant House, Feeding America, and Fighting Pretty supporting cancer patients. He has received numerous certifications and recognitions from organizations including Poetry X. Hunger, Capital Area Food Bank, The American Red Cross, Washington DC Family and Child Service Agency, The Alliance to End Hunger, and many other fine organizations.



Virginia City or County Affiliation

Prince William County

Current City/State of Residence

Manassas, Virginia




Black or African American


Humanitarian, Child advocate, African American culture, Empathy

Published Works or Performances

Books, Journals, Anthologies

  • Everywhere Drums. Third World Press Forthcoming 2023.
  • "Rollerboy," in Pandemic of Violence Anthology. North of Oxford Journal 2022.
  • Prince George's Arts and Humanities Anthology. (Poetry) PGC Arts Council 2022.
  • "Ayansha, The cat, and Glance," in Poets Anonymous: 30th Anniversary. Local Gems Press, 2022.
  • "Testimony," in Poets Speak Back to Hunger: An e-Collection of Poems from Around the World. Poetry X Hunger, 2021.
  • Confetti. WBTR, Virginia Writers Club, 2021.
  • NoVa Bards 2021: An Anthology of Northern Virginia Poetry. Local Gems Press, 2021.
  • Free From Slavery, Not From Racism. (Book Forward), Powell and Cowan Press, 2020.
  • In the Midst: A COVID-19 Anthology. Sandy T. Press, 2020.
  • Written In Arlington. Pay Cock Press, 2020.
  • Virginia Bards: Prince William County Poetry Review. Local Gems Press, 2020.
  • Chaos: A Poetry Vortex. Local Gems Press, 2020.
  • NoVa Bards 2020: An Anthology of Northern Virginia Poetry. Local Gems Press, 2020.
  • Spilled Ink. Local Gems Press, 2020.
  • Trees In A Garden of Ashes. Local Gems Press, 2020.
  • NoVa Bards 2019: An Anthology of Northern Virginia Poetry. Local Gems Press, 2019.
  • Observations in Black. (Chapbook), Shelton Press 1991.

Recent Featured Poet/ Radio Appearances

  • George Mason University. “Arts Alive,” (Featured Poet 2021, 2022).
  • Poetry Society of England. “Poetry Café," (Featured Poet 2022).
  • Oregon State University. (Honors Colloquium Discussion - Dr. Hiram Larew 2022).
  • National Black Poetry Day, Arlington County Govt. (Featured Poet 2022).
  • Nourishing Liberty Podcast. (Poetry Discussion 2022).
  • Poets Speak Back to Hunger, Unitarian Universalist Congregation. (Featured Poet 2022).
  • Baltimore City College. “Book Notes,” WBJC FM. (Featured Poet Radio Interview 2022).
  • The University of Georgia. (Honors Colloquium Discussion - Dr. Hiram Larew 2022).
  • Sojourn with Words. (Verizon and Comcast Cable, Featured Poet 2022).
  • Maryland Food Bank Podcast. (Poetry Discussion 2022).
  • Northern Virginia College. (Featured Poet 2021, 2022).
  • KaZarr Coleman Show. (Verizon and Comcast Cable, Featured Poet 2022).
  • Poetry Live University of Virginia Campus. (Live Arts Theater, Charlottesville Virginia 2022).
  • Poetry Corner NYC Black History Month. (Host, Featured poet 2022).
  • The New School University, NYC. (Featured Poet Classroom Discussion 2022).
  • Montana State University. (Featured Poet Classroom Interview 2021).
  • Poets Speak Back to Hunger: Collection of Poems Around the World (Poetry X Hunger 2021).
  • National Art and Humanities, Poetry Ministry. (Featured Poet 2021).
  • Quintessential Listening with Dr. Michael Anthony Ingram. (Featured Poet 2021).
  • Quintessential Listening with Dr. Michael Anthony Ingram. (Juneteenth 2021).
  • Quintessential Listening with Dr. Michael Anthony Ingram. (Mental Health Awareness 2021).
  • Global Lighthouse Studios, Kakuma Kenya Fundraiser Event. (Featured Poet 2021).
  • Howard University. (Poetry Assignment Classroom Interview, Dr. Tony Medina 2021).
  • South Carolina Poetry Events. (Featured Poet 2021).
  • Poetry in the Park. (Featured Poet 2021).
  • Fighting Pretty, Cancer Fundraiser. (Featured Poet 2021).
  • PWC Black History Month Event. (Featured Poet 2021,2022).
  • Penn State University GLAG21, “Poetry Café.” (Featured Poet 2021, 2022).
  • Covenant House for Teens Fundraiser. (Featured Poet 2021).
  • We, The Motherhood. (Autism Episode Featured Poet 2020).
  • The Literary Cypher. (Featured Poet 2020).
  • Alliance To End Hunger. (Featured Poet 2021).
  • Bards Against Hunger/ Feeding America. (Featured Poet 2020).
  • United Nations. (FAO Worldwide Broadcast, Featured Poet 2020).
  • 2020 Hunger Free Communities. (Featured Speaker 2020).



Brian Donnell James


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