Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson (courtesy)

Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson (courtesy)

As UCSB Reads celebrates its 10th anniversary year, KCSB-FM is again hosting a series of live readings each weekday (from Monday, January 25th until the book’s conclusion), at 12noon PST. This year’s choice for UCSB Reads is Bryan Stevenson’s 2014 book Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption.

Stevenson, the author of this best-selling, award-winning memoir about racial inequality in the U.S, is founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative. Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Desmond Tutu as called him “America’s young Nelson Mandela.”

Each year UCSB Reads, a program led by the UCSB Library, aims to engage readers in dialogue about issues of local and national significance. Several discussions, panels, exhibitions, screenings, and other events open to the Santa Barbara community will culminate in Stevenson’s free lecture in Campbell Hall on Monday, April 18th at 8pm. Click HERE for an complete list of 2016 UCSB Reads events.

KCSB annually opens up its airwaves to students, faculty, staff, and members of the greater community to share in these on-air readings, which will take place Monday through Friday from 12-12:15pm, beginning January 25th, through completion of the text. “UCSB Reads on KCSB” seeks to promote the community-wide educational experience provided by the UCSB Reads program, which brings the campus and Santa Barbara community together for a common reading experience.

Bryan Stevenson / photo by Nina Subin

Bryan Stevenson / photo by Nina Subin

A Harvard Law School graduate, and professor at the New York University School of Law, Bryan Stevenson has represented capital defendants and death row prisoners since 1985. He has argued six cases before the Supreme Court, and won a ruling on behalf of juveniles in the justice system. Also a MacArthur Fellow, Stevenson grew up poor in a racially segregated neighborhood in Delaware. A combination of memoir and reporting, Just Mercy chronicles the author’s own life as well as the stories of defendants he has helped. The Equal Justice Initiative is a nonprofit legal organization that defends death row prisoners, juvenile offenders, the wrongly convicted, and those who have suffered from racial bias in the criminal justice system.

Having received numerous honors — the 2015 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction, the 2015 Dayton Literary Peace Prize for Nonfiction, the 2015 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work of Nonfiction — Just Mercy was also named by Time magazine as one of the Top 10 nonfiction titles of 2014. Actor Michael B. Jordan will star in a film adaptation of the memoir. Each year, the UCSB Reads selection is determined by a panel of faculty, students, staff, and community representatives.

KCSB’s first on-air reading was presented by Rebecca Metzger, UCSB Library’s Assistant University Librarian for Outreach and Academic Collaboration. If you would like to volunteer as an on-air reader for KCSB Reads, please email KCSB’s UCSB Reads volunteer coordinator Marta Ulvaeus at <marta.ulvaeus@kcsb.org>.

“UCSB Reads on KCSB” will air Mondays through Fridays throughout the Winter from 12-1215pm PST.