About Erin Gruwell
Erin Gruwell is a two-time recipient of California’s Teacher of the Year. Her work with disenfranchised high school students received notice from media across the country, including The Oprah Winfrey Show, Good Morning America, and NPR, and accounts of her story have appeared in The Los Angeles Time and People magazine. As a young English teacher at Woodrow Wilson High School in Long Beach, CA, she met students who lived with violence each day and who reacted with further violence and hatred. She responded to this reality by including such books as The Diary of Anne Frank and Ziata’s Diary: A Child’s Life in Wartime Sarajevo in her lesson plans and then encouraging her students to find parallels to their own lives. Her students’ insights and reflections are chronicled in the book The Freedom Writers Diary.