Friday, January 29, 2016

RIP to Award-Winning Librarian @DevenKBlack

Last month educators had to say goodbye to Joe Bower. Shortly prior, we lost Bob Sprankle. This week, I was stunned to learn we lost another innovative educator, Deven Black. I knew Deven as an intellectual out-of-the-box thinker. I loved speaking with Deven because he appreciated having lively conversations where we might disagree on a topic and knew on the other side of it, we’d both come out smarter.

Deven credits me for getting him started with social media. He said he was pissed when my advice on how to get started with Twitter and other social media was, “Just create an account and do it.” He was looking for a more complex answer I suppose. He told me he followed my suggestion and later grew to appreciate my advice to simply jump right in. At the time Deven was a special education teacher and later he became a librarian (which you can read about here). Because of his intellect and insights, it wasn’t long before Deven became quite well-known in the world of education.

In 2012 he was named one of the top 20 education bloggers by the Bammy Awards. You can read his take here. The same year he gave a great talk at Jeff Pulver’s #140Edu Conference. His topic was “How to make dropping out work for you.” It’s worth watching. You can watch his talk or read the transcript here. Deven was also was part of a group that contributed to the New York City Department of Education’s ground breaking social media guidelines which were the first in the world to be created with students and teachers.  

Bammy 2012 Top Education Bloggers. Devin is on the left. Back row.
Photo credit: Kevin Jarrett
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