Archive for the ‘Interviews & Profiles’ Category

Remembering Zbigniew Brzezinski

In 2012, I had the honor of chatting briefly with Zbigniew Brzezinski at the Polish Embassy in Washington D.C., where he gave an inspiring speech about a childhood encounter in his native Poland with Jan Karski, who had just been awarded posthumously the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Brzezinski himself had received the Medal in 1981 [...]

From Hoops to Ink: A Profile of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

By Leonard Kniffel “Going to the library helped me understand how big the world was and the incredible amount of possibilities that you had for your life,” says basketball legend turned author Kareeem Abdul-Jabbar. During an interview at the American Library Association’s 2008 Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar told me, “I’ve been an avid [...]

Reading for Life: A Profile of Oprah Winfrey

By Leonard Kniffel “I don’t believe in failure,” Oprah Winfrey has said, and when you talk about celebrities who influence reading, who among them has had more of an impact on American reading habits than this extraordinary television talk-show host? The ways Oprah Winfrey has supported the programs, the mission, and the success of libraries [...]

New Consul General in Chicago
Wants to Showcase the New Poland

Piotr Janicki interviewed by Leonard Kniffel, August 1, 2016 Encouraging trade and tourism is high on the priority list of Piotr Janicki, new Consul General at the Consulate of the Republic of Poland in Chicago. Before his appointment in July, Janicki worked for commercial banks in New York and New Jersey. He also served as [...]

Disaster Relief…with Books:
Libraries without Borders

By Leonard Kniffel | July 16, 2013 When a disaster occurs, aid workers, organizations, and governments naturally focus on emergency assistance to victims. They set up medical outposts in conflict zones, drop food supplies from helicopters, and hand out shoes and clothing in disaster areas. The activists behind Libraries Without Borders (Bibliothèques Sans Frontières) understand [...]