About Nikki Patin

Featured in The Guardian, Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Reader, on WBEZ, and on international television and radio, Nikki Patin has been writing, performing, educating, and advocating for over two decades. She has taught hundreds of workshops on performance poetry, body image, sexual assault prevention and LGBT issues. Patin has performed, taught and spoken at colleges, universities, theaters and many other spaces such as the University of Chicago, Loyola University, DePaul University, Adler School of Psychology, Northwestern University, Cook County Jail, Riker’s Island prison, University of Michigan, University of Wisconsin-Madison, the Goodman Theatre, Victory Gardens Theater, EXPO Chicago, Black Artists Retreat, the National Black Theater in Harlem, Brooklyn Museum and many others.

Patin was featured on the fourth season of HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, was voted one of 30 under 30 most influential LGBTQ people in Chicago by Windy City Times and took the gold medal in the 2006 Gay Games International LGBT poetry slam. Patin was voted “Best Standout Performer” in the Dunedin Fringe Festival while headlining a tour of her solo performance piece, “The Phat Grrrl Revolution” throughout New Zealand and Australia in 2009. She has released several chapbooks, a full-length collection of writing and design, two EPs and a full-length album entitled “Bedroom Empire.”

In 2014, she made history when she addressed the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland on behalf of Black women survivors of sexual violence in the U.S. Nikki Patin holds an MFA in Creative Non-Fiction from the University of Southern Maine. Patin is the Community Engagement Director for the Chicago Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation and the founder and Executive Producer of Surviving the Mic, a survivor-led organization that has crafted its own methodology of holding brave and affirming writing and performance spaces for survivors of sexual harm. 

Nikki Patin is a queer, non-binary survivor of both domestic and sexual violence and single Mama to a son with autism. 

4 thoughts on “About Nikki Patin

  1. Nikki! Yesterday my English teacher showed me your video “sweat”. You don’t understand how inspired i felt! I couldn’t hear the words quite well over the loud roaring of the class. But as soon as i saw the title, i wrote it down. Gurl, work it cause i know you have the power ❤ Those few words i heard from you just brought me to like poetry. & Let me tell you how much i hate(d) poetry. Is there any way i could view/ read the video/ lyrics?

  2. I cried when I read your poem “Surviving Something…” yesterday in the June 11th The Reader. You gave voice, in ink, to many words I’ve heard uttered throughout my 50 something yrs. Most of the times they hurt me deeply, but when I read YOUR words, it felt strange, almost bittersweet. Your art, your work is relevatory.

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