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Omékongo Dibinga is an American poet, musician, motivational speaker, diversity consultant, CNN contributor and positive rapper.Template:Dead link His messages are usually targeted toward a younger audience on subjects as bullying, racism, and homophobia, motivation and diversity education.Template:Dead link As the Founder and CEO of Free Your Mind Publishing, Dibinga has published and released several books, CDs, and DVDs of over 80 authors as well as himself. These works range from poetry and youth professional development to motivation and hip-hop music.
Omékongo Luhaka wa Dibinga was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His parents, Dibinga wa Said & Ngolela wa Kabongo were Democratic Republic of the Congo (ex-Zaire) refugees, who fled the Congo because of their role in aiding in its independence. As a first generation Congolese American, Dibinga grew up as the 7th of 9 children who were taught to remember their African roots regardless of where they resided.
Dibinga studied at Harvard, MIT, Princeton, Georgetown, Morehouse, and The Fletcher School, where he received his M.A. in Law & Diplomacy.[no citations needed here] He is currentlyTemplate:When? a PhD student in International Education Policy at The University of Maryland.
Dibinga is married to Kendra and they have two children.
Template:Unreferenced section Dibinga has released seven spoken word and hip-hop CDs. His first book of poems, "From the Limbs of my Poetree," was published in 2004 through Free Your Mind Publishing, which Dibinga founded in early 2004.
Dibinga's second book is an anthology of 8th grade students from Westland Middle School in Bethesda, MD. The book is entitled: "Poems From the Future: Poetic Reflections From the Next Generation." His third book is entitled "Put Your Shoes On! A step by step guide for Youth Entering the Workforce." In 2011 he published the first book of children's poetry by Shaumba Yandje Dibinga entitled "Pride in my Stride."
Dibinga released 3 mixtapes in 2005, 2008, and 2011 entitled Bootleg, Bootleg II, and Bootleg III. The goal was to show young people that they can rap like their favorite artists but not curse or disrespect women. His 5th CD, Reality Show, is Omékongo's first hybrid spoken word and hip-hop CD.
In 2009, Dibinga launched his "G.R.O.W. Towards Your Greatness!" motivational series. The CD is a musical compilation of Dibinga's radio motivational segments from Touch 106.1 FM.
Published literary works
(2004) From the Limbs of My Poetree
(2005) Poems from the Future
(2007) Put Your Shoes On! A Step by Step Guide for Youth Entering the Workforce
(2010) G.R.O.W. Towards Your Greatness! 10 Steps to Living Your Best Life
(2011) Pride in my Stride
Awards and honors
- Urban Music AwardsTemplate:Dead link
- 2003 Cambridge Poetry Award for "Best CD"Template:Dead link
- Rodriguez, Rachel. "What's in a Name? More than you may think.". Family History. CNN. http://articles.cnn.com/2010-06-23/us/names.irpt_1_leticia-gonzalez-diversity-family-history?_s=PM:IREPORT. Retrieved February 12, 2011.
- Mehta, Christine. "Rapper brings fiery message about genocide". Motivational speaker and activist Omekongo Dibinga crusades to end genocide in Congo.. News House. http://www.thenewshouse.com/story/rapper-brings-fiery-message-about-genocide. Retrieved February 11, 2011.
- Dibinga, Omekongo. "Biography". Omekongo Dibinga. Free Your Mind Publishing. http://www.omekongo.com/biography. Retrieved April 1, 2010.
- Sinclair, Rebecca. "Omekongo". Omekongo Dibinga PressKit. M3D Talent Agency. http://www8.georgetown.edu/departments/english/lannan/samplework/Omekongo_Press_Kit_%282005%29.pdf. Retrieved February 13, 2011.