In 1972, the Givens Foundation was established to provide scholarships in support of the academic success of African American students who wanted to go on to higher education. In 1985, the Foundation’s mission took on a literary focus when twelve community families partnered with the University of Minnesota to purchase a 3,000 piece-collection of African American Literature from a collector in New York. Today, the Givens Foundation for African American Literature remains the only organization in Minnesota exclusively dedicated to advancing and celebrating black literature and writers. Our literary arts education residencies, African American author series, community reading campaigns, and programs for writers illuminate the cultural resources and creative imagination found within African American literature to enrich cultural understanding for diverse audiences of all ages.