Rapid Response event featuring keynote speaker William Electric Black at Adelphi University.

William Electric Black

William Electric Black

According to the American Public Health Association, guns are a leading cause of premature death in the United States. This affects people of all ages and races in the U.S., but has a disproportionate impact on young adults, males and racial/ethnic minorities. Over 90,000 people a year are affected by injury and death combined. How can we address this? On Tuesday, February 23, 2016, the Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation will host a Rapid Response Event: Changing Youth Gun Culture in One Generation, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. in the Angello Alumni House, 154 Cambridge Avenue, Garden City, NY.

The event will feature Ian Ellis James, a.k.a. William Electric Black, as the keynote speaker. Other distinguished speakers include Robert Troiano of the Town of North Hempstead and Village of Hempstead Mayor Wayne J. Hall Sr., among others. The keynote will be followed by a panel discussion of different approaches to addressing this issue with our youth.

Ian Ellis James is a seven-time Emmy Award-winning writer and former writer for Sesame Street. James has been writing in the family entertainment television industry for more than 15 years with credits from Sesame Workshop, Nickelodeon, Scholastic Productions, Warner Cable, Winchester TV & Film in London, and more. He recently published a children’s book series to combat gun violence. The first book, A GUN IS NOT FUN, is an illustrated book geared toward Pre-K programs through second grade to discuss gun culture among young people and save lives in cities across America.

His theatre projects, under his stage name William Electric Black, have been seen across the country. For the past seven years, he has been writing, directing, and producing plays at La MaMa ETC in New York City where he presently runs the Poetry Electric Series. James’ first play aiming to combat inner city gun violence, Welcome Home Sonny T, opened in December 2013 at Theater for the New City. His second play in the series, When Black Boys Die, recently closed, and his next play, The Death of a Black Man (A Walk By,) opens in June 2016. James has received several Best Play Awards, been published by Benchmark Education, The Dramatic Publishing Co., Smith & Krauss, and received a Bronze Apple for directing.  

This event is free and open to the public, but space is limited. All attendees will receive a free copy of A GUN IS NOT FUN, a new book for children by Ian Ellis James.


About Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation

Adelphi University’s Center for Health Innovation (CHI) is the primary resource in our region for innovative, multidisciplinary, evidence-based responses to improving health, healthcare systems, and public health. CHI creates and fosters community-focused, interdisciplinary academic programming, applied research, community partnerships, and leadership—all with the goal of meeting current and emergent health needs of Long Island and our region.

For further information, please contact:

Center for Health Innovation
Nexus Building, Room 310
p – 516.877.4582
e –

Phone Number
More Info
Levermore Hall, 205
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