About Mase


J Mase III is a Black/trans/queer poet & educator based in Seattle, by way of Philly. He is the author of “If I Should Die Under the Knife, Tell my Kidney I was the Fiercest Poet Around”, as well as “And Then I Got Fired: One Transqueer’s Reflections on Grief, Unemployment, and Inappropriate Jokes about Death”. 

As an educator, J Mase has worked with thousands of community members in the US, the UK, and Canada on the needs of LGBTQIA youth and adults in spaces such as K-12 schools, universities, faith communities, and restricted care facilities among others. 

He is the founder of awQward, the first ever trans and queer people of color specific talent agency. Currently, he is co-editing The #BlackTransPrayerBook with awQward artist Lady Dane Figueroa Edidi. 

As a performer, he has shared stages with world renowned artists like Chuck D and the Indigo Girls. His work and musings have been featured on MSNBC, NBC OUT, Essence Live, Atlanta Black Star, GO Magazine, Believe Out Loud, Everyday Feminism, Black Girl Dangerous, Upworthy, the New York Times, Buzzfeed, the Root, the Huffington Post and more.  

Check him out on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and of course: www.awQwardtalent.com!

What the people are saying:

Andy Cofino, Program Coordinator at Princeton University

“J Mase III is an exceptional, engaging and dynamic educator, consultant and performer. For years we have hired him to perform poetry, lead workshops, and design and facilitate curricula for our campus community. Mase does all of his work with great intentionality, care, and a deep commitment to intersectional social justice. Our students, too, are in awe with his brilliance and are always asking for more time with Mase!”

Denise Beek, Communications Director, Leeway Foundation (leeway.org)

“J Mase is an incredible coach and facilitator. We’ve had the honor and pleasure of bringing him into our space to show artists how they can begin to develop sustainable lives from their art and creative practice. Through his insightful instruction and wisdom, participants have not only had the opportunity to see themselves in a liberated space of thriving off of their art, but they’ve bridged connections to each other’s work and and took the time to dream and build collective visions. Leeway is a forever fan of J Mase!”

Lillian Dunn, The Apiary Corp.

“J Mase III, certified sexy beast! (GRRR)… If you need a performer who will make you laugh ‘til you cry and then actually cry just because the poem is goddamn beautiful, make sure you check [Mase] out.”

John K. Sakaluk: Assistant Professor at the University of Victoria (Canada)

“Mase visited our campus to deliver his Solidarity Framework workshop, and to share his first-hand experiences with Transphobia and White Supremacy; both events were incredibly well-attended. Simply stated, Mase was an electric, engaging, and persuasive speaker, and his visit galvanized members of our University to recognize and react more quickly, and strongly, in the face of institutionalized discrimination and violence. I simply cannot recommend him highly enough as a speaker–facilitating a visit from Mase is money very well spent.”

Judy Jarvis, Director, LGBT CenterPrinceton University

“Mase works with us as a consultant and facilitator for the LGBT Center’s LGBTQIA Peer Education Program and his work is simply excellent. He helped us revamp the three-day training curriculum using his broad knowledge of anti-oppression teaching tools, and students loved both the training content itself and Mase’s facilitation. Mase’s never-ending energy, skill in facilitating large and small groups, and dedication to students always makes it a pleasure to work with him. I cannot recommend Mase more highly to come work with your school!”