At the Little Free Library nonprofit organization, we benefit from a dedicated and diverse national board of directors. The board serves as our governing body and helps uphold our mission to be a catalyst for building community, inspiring readers, and expanding book access for all. In this series, we’ll introduce you to the amazing individuals who volunteer on our board.
Name: Dr. Artika R. Tyner
Current job: CEO, Planting People Growing Justice Press and Bookstore
Years on LFL board: 2 years
Why did you decide to join Little Free Library’s board of directors?
I share the commitment to promoting education, learning, reading, and community building.
What is your professional background?
Civil Rights attorney, law professor, leadership scholar, author, speaker
How has your expertise helped Little Free Library achieve its mission to be a catalyst for building community, inspiring readers, and increasing book access for all?
I have connected the work of LFL with our literacy nonprofit, Planting People Growing Justice Leadership Institute. We have worked together to host book drives and inspire young readers.
What is the Little Free Library project or initiative you’re most passionate about?
Read in Color since it focuses on increasing diversity in books. I became a children’s book author and started our publishing company to promote racial diversity in books. This is critically important when you are more likely to see a black dog or black bear on the cover of a book than a Black girl or Black boy. Representation in books helps to create those mirrors and windows that are the foundation of a just and inclusive society.
Do you have a Little Free Library of your own? Do you use the little libraries in your community?
Yes, we have a LFL at our office space, Aya’s Place. It serves as a convening place in our community. The children and community gather to select new reads and share about what books they are reading.
We also created an office tradition. Everyone who visits our office adds a book to our LFL. Also, all new staff members have their photos taken in front of our LFL.
What do you like to do when you’re not working with Team LFL?
I enjoy writing children’s books. I have written 30 books. I also love to travel and my dream is to visit every country in Africa.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Yes, I use the LFLs in my community. I have found great treasures that help me to pause, reflect, and grow.