Poet and writer Nikki Giovanni was born Yolande Cornelia Giovanni, Jr., was born on June 7, 1943, in Knoxville, Tennessee. Giovanni is a prominent poet and writer who first caught the public’s attention as part of the Black Arts movement of the late 1960s. Growing up in the Cincinnati area, she often visited Knoxville to see family, especially her maternal grandmother. After graduating with honors from Fisk University in 1967, she returned to Cincinnati and established the city's first Black Arts Festival. Giovanni also began writing the poems that are included in her first self-published volume, Black Feeling, Black Talk (1968).