Dr. Celes Tisdale is a professional actor, a published poet, a national and international storyteller, and a lecturer on the arts and culture. Tisdale grew up mostly on Buffalo’s East Side, and in his lifetime he has taught in a variety of contexts, including the Buffalo Public School System, a creative writing program at Attica State Prison, and the University at Buffalo, where he is now a Professor Emeritus (English).
Tisdale has published an anthology, Betcha Ain’t: Poems from Attica, and We Be Poetin’, We the People. He served as the executive director of the African American Cultural Center of Buffalo, and it was during his tenure that he named the institute’s theater after Paul Robeson. He was a recipient of a SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence, Buffalo’s “Man of the Year” Award, and Buffalo and Erie County Arts Council Artist of the Year. He has also been acknowledged by Young Audiences of Western New York with an Outstanding Artist Award.