Kiran Singh Sirah


Kiran Singh Sirah is a Speaker, Folklorist, Storyteller, Peacebuilder and Past President of the International Storytelling Center (ISC,) producer of the world-renowned National Storytelling Festival.

Prior to his appointment at ISC, Sirah helped establish a number of award-winning arts, cultural, and human rights programs in numerous countries. These included community building programs at National Museums Scotland in response to the 9/11 attacks, and a number of peacebuilding and conflict resolution initiatives exploring issues of religious, ethnic, and sectarian conflicts in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the United States.

In 2011, he embarked on a Rotary Peace Fellowship focusing on the folklore of “home” at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Upon graduating in 2013, he began his ten year tenure at ISC and helped the institution grow in ways previously unimaginable.

Sirah is regularly asked to provide keynote lectures, workshops, and trainings for such entities as the Smithsonian Institution; the US State Department and Department of Defense; the Library of Congress; the Desmond Tutu Peace Foundation, the Alliance for Peacebuilding, the Pentagon, the White House, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and the United Nations; and has worked in and in collaboration with projects in Colombia, Brazil, Palestine, Israel, South Sudan, and Uganda.

In addition to storytelling for peace and justice, his passion includes mentoring youth and young adults, particularly youth-at-risk, peace activists, and poets (including mentoring national Poetry Out Loud champions,) to help them be positive change agents in their communities.

In 2017, Kiran was awarded the “Champion of Peace” recognition at the Rotary International ceremony at the United Nations in Geneva and was recently nominated for work to receive a national educational Martin Luther King Jr. human rights award. Kiran firmly believes storytelling not only enriches lives, but also holds the key to building a fairer and more balanced world.