Poet, photographer, and bandleader Thomas Sayers Ellis is the author of The Maverick Room and Skin, Inc,: Identity Repair Poems, He co-founded The Dark Room Collective and The Dark Room Reading Series in 1989 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His poems and photographs have appeared in numerous journals, including The Paris Review, Poetry, The Nation, and Best American Poetry (1997, 2001, 2010, 2015). In 2015, he co-founded Heroes Are Gang Leaders, a literary Free Jazz band of artists who were awarded the American Book Award for Oral Literature in 2018. Having recorded six CDs to date, HAGL has performed in Paris, Berlin, Gdansk, The Hague, New York City and Lisbon. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship in Poetry. His book is Crank Shaped Notes (Arrowsmith Press, 2021). TSE relocated to St Petersburg, Florida in 2016 was named its first Photo Laureate in 2023.