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Journalist and author Sylvester Monroe, whose reporting on ethnic and minority issues has won national acclaim, will discuss the "diversity imperative" Thursday, Jan. 13, in Salt Lake City.

Co-sponsored by the Salt Lake City Library and the Rowland Hall-St. Mark's School, the free public lecture is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. in the third floor auditorium of the Main Library, 209 E. 500 South. A reception sponsored by the Deseret News will follow the lecture.Monroe, a Los Angeles correspondent for Time Magazine and former Newsweek reporter, is perhaps best known for an award-winning Newsweek cover story titled "Brothers."

Published in 1987, the Newsweek story chronicled the lives of Monroe and 11 of his friends who grew up in the desperate and demoralizing environment of a Chicago housing project. The article was later expanded into a book titled "Brothers Black and Poor - A True Story of Courage and Survival."

In the book, Monroe describes the violence, poverty and hopelessness that overwhelmed the tenants of the "Trey-nine" ghetto and the unexpected good fortune that made some escapes - including his own - possible.

Vernon Jordan, former president of the National Urban League, said of Monroe's book: "It encompasses all the hope and despair of generations of black men with a special warning for the next generation."

Chosen to participate in a special outreach program called "A Better Chance," Monroe left "Trey-nine" in 1966 for a prestigious boarding school in Newport, R.I., "the other side of the universe." He went on to Harvard, where he was graduated cum laude in social studies in 1973.

Monroe began his journalistic career as a Boston correspondent for Newsweek in 1973. He moved to the Chicago bureau in 1976, later rising to deputy bureau chief. In 1983, he was named Boston bureau chief and went on to cover Jesse Jackson's presidential campaigns in 1984 and 1988.

His award-winning journalism includes articles on "Why Jonny Can't Write" and a three-part series on "Why Public Schools are Flunking."

In addition to his public library lecture, Monroe will speak to Rowland Hall faculty and students on Friday, Jan. 14.