"One of the more revolutionary
things we can do in life is to
stand up for the poor. They are
the people most ignored."
Under Janice's leadership in partnership with her husband, the Reverend Cecil Williams, Glide Memorial Church has achieved worldwide recognition for its multiracial, multicultural programs, which have transformed and empowered the lives of tens of thousands of people. Its growth has been phenomenal with an annual budget of $12 million, a diverse staff of 175, and a volunteer cadre that reached 35,000 in 1999. As an author, Mirikitani has written and edited dozens of landmark books, journals and anthologies along with her own four books of poetry and she has served as San Francisco's poet laureate for two years. She has choreographed more than 35 productions as a producing director of Glide Dance Ensemble. A third generation Japanese American, born in Stockton just before World War II, Janice and her family were interned in camps. As a child, she experienced 11 years of sexual abuse by various family members and she was battered as a young woman. She uses these experiences in her art and to create recovery programs for women at Glide.