Isaiah Mākar | Founder, Impact Mākars

Isaiah Mākar overcame the fear of public speaking and social anxiety after discovering his voice in the Spoken Word Club at Oak Park and River Forest High School (OPRF). Isaiah once said, “I hate poetry” to his freshman English teacher, Peter Khan, but was inspired by a JAY-Z lyric used in the writing workshop. He realized the music he listened to was poetry and began teaching himself to write. Before graduating, Isaiah performed in four spoken word showcases, was a junior slam poetry finalist, and rapped in front of the entire school at the MLK assembly. A week after performing in his third showcase, his mom suffered a life threatening stroke.

Isaiah’s mom was a Human Resources professional for over 20 years, working many long, stressful hours. After she was released from the hospital, Isaiah began his next act; becoming his mom’s caregiver. While taking care of his mom, Isaiah earned a degree in Organizational and Corporate Communication from The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). He won the Outstanding Oral Presentation award at the Illinois Summer Research Symposium by performing his research on how poetry develops transferable communication skills. He taught poetry at nearly 20 schools in the Chicagoland area as an artist-in-residence and is a two-time poetry slam finalist at the Gwendolyn Brooks Open Mic Awards. His poem, Interstellar Birth, is featured in the book, Respect The Mic: Celebrating 20 years of Poetry from a Chicagoland High School.

Isaiah Mākar is the Founder of Impact Mākars, an arts and wellness social enterprise that helps organizations create human connection through creative expression. Isaiah has worked with many teams to build community through Mākarshops, music-infused poetry workshops– including Yelp, Grainger, Grant Thornton, Thresholds, and the Society of Human Resources Management Association (SHRM).

Isaiah realized his journey was a spiritual training camp preparing him for his calling. Being a caregiver taught him responsibility, commitment to service, and compassionate leadership. The OPRF Spoken Word Club taught him the power of conscious communication, self-awareness, and community. Isaiah Mākar envisions Impact Mākars as a world-wide movement that transforms the way we create human connection through creative expression.