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Tonya W. Bolden

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Information about Tonya W. Bolden

Profile image of Tonya W. Bolden

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Author

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Burnt Orange
Favorite Food:
Salad
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Jamaica
Favorite Quote:
When I Know Who I Am, Then I'll Be Free.

Birthplace

Born:
3/1/1959
Birth Location:
New York, New York

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Author

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Burnt Orange
Favorite Food:
Salad
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Jamaica
Favorite Quote:
When I Know Who I Am, Then I'll Be Free.

Birthplace

Born:
3/1/1959
Birth Location:
New York
See how Tonya W. Bolden is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Author and publisher Tonya Wilyce Bolden was born on March 1, 1959, in New York City to Georgia Bolden, a homemaker, and Willie Bolden, a garment center shipping manager. Bolden grew up in Harlem in a musical family and loved to read; she attended Public M.E.S. 146, an elementary school in Manhattan, and then graduated from the Chapin School, a private secondary school, in Manhattan in 1976. Bolden attended Princeton University in New Jersey, and, in 1981, obtained her B.A. degree in Slavic languages and literature with a Russian focus. Bolden was also a University Scholar and received the Nicholas Bachko, Jr. Scholarship Prize.

Upon graduating from Princeton University, Bolden began working as a salesperson for Charles Alan, Incorporated, a dress manufacturer, while working towards her M.A. degree at Columbia University. In 1985, Bolden earned her degree in Slavic languages and literature, as well as a Certificate for Advanced Study of the Soviet Union from the Harriman Institute; after this she began working as an office coordinator for Raoulfilm, Inc., assisting in the research and development of various film and literary products. Bolden worked as an English instructor at Malcolm-King College and New Rochelle School of New Resources while serving as newsletter editor of the HARKline, a homeless shelter newsletter.

In 1990, Bolden wrote her first book, The Family Heirloom Cookbook. In 1992, Bolden co-authored a children’s book entitled Mama, I Want To Sing along with Vy Higginsen, based on Higginsen’s musical. Bolden continued publishing throughout the 1990s, releasing Starting a Business from your Home, Mail-Order and Direct Response, The Book of African-American Women: 150 Crusaders, Creators, and Uplifters, And Not Afraid to Dare: The Stories of Ten African-American Women, American Patriots: The Story of Blacks in the Military from the Revolution to Desert Storm and The Champ. Bolden became editor of the Quarterly Black Review of Books in 1994, and served as an editor for 33 Things Every Girl Should Know, in 1998. Bolden’s writing career became even more prolific in the following decade; a partial list of her works include:, Our Souls: A Celebration of Black American Artists, Maritcha: A Nineteenth Century American Girl, MLK: Journey of a King, Take-Off: American All-Girl Bands During World War II, and George Washington Carver, a book she authored in conjunction with an exhibit about the famous African American inventor created by The Field Museum in Chicago.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Tonya W. Bolden's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Tonya W. Bolden lists her favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers her maternal grandmother
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her mother's upbringing
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Tonya W. Bolden describes how her parents met
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her mother's move to New York City
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers her mother's career
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her earliest memories of New York City
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers President John Fitzgerald Kennedy's assassination
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls the United House of Prayer for All People in New York City
  • Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her early activities
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers attending cultural festivals
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her upbringing
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Tonya W. Bolden describes New York City's East Harlem neighborhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers M.E.S. 146 in New York City, pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about her parents' discipline
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers M.E.S. 146 in New York City, pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls being sheltered from racial discrimination
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers New York City's Chapin School
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls her early interest in literature
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her experiences at the Chapin School, pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her experiences at the Chapin School, pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls her decision to attend Princeton University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about her parents' commitment to education
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her first year at Princeton University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls her aspirations while at Princeton University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about her racial identity
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers learning about African American literature
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her maternal uncle
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls her political views as a college student
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her aspirations upon graduating from Princeton University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers her early interest in writing
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls her yearlong sabbatical from Princeton University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers voting for the first time
  • Tape: 3 Story: 12 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls her decision to attend graduate school
  • Tape: 3 Story: 13 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers studying at Columbia University in New York City
  • Tape: 3 Story: 14 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls how she became involved with Black Enterprise
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls her interest in socialism
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about her early writing career
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her published works
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about writing books on African American history
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Tonya W. Bolden recalls working with Marie Brown
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Tonya A. Bolden describes her decision to write nonfiction
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers the attacks of September 11, 2001
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about influential black female writers
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about her influences as an author
  • Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about writing children's literature
  • Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her book, 'Rock of Ages'
  • Tape: 4 Story: 12 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her plans for the future
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about her writing philosophy
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Tonya W. Bolden reflects upon her life
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Tonya W. Bolden reflects upon her career
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about Alexander Pushkin and Yelena Khanga
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Tonya W. Bolden remembers her literary awards
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Tonya W. Bolden describes how she would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Tonya W. Bolden talks about the community of African American authors
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Tonya W. Bolden describes her family's perspective on her career
  • Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Tonya W. Bolden narrates her photographs