Gwendolyn Brooks is an American poet. She was born in Topeka, Kansas, on June 17, 1917. She graduated from Wilson Junior College in Chicago in 1936 and received her L.H.D. (Doctor of Humane Letters) from Columbia College in 1964. Her first poem was published when she was fourteen. In 1950 she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in poetry for Annie Allen; in 1968 she was named Poet Laureate of Illinois in 1968. Brooks's earliest poetry reflected the lives of poor urban blacks. Critics acclaimed her writing as city-folk poetry. The New York Times Book Review hailed Brooks for her revelations of the African experience in the United States, particularly her sensitive portraits of black women. In addition, she has also written a book of poetry for children, Bronzeville Boys and Girls (1967) as well as several children's fiction books. Her autobiography Report from Part One was published in 1972. Brooks is the mother of two children.