Cordellya Smith was born and raised in Southeastern Kentucky in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. As a child, when she wasn't wading in a creek or digging in dirt, her favorite place to be was sitting on the porch listening to her great-grandfather tell stories. Her lifelong love of children's stories came from those experiences.
One of the first college graduates in her family, Cordellya is an advocate for education and has earned multiple degrees. When asked to speak on why education is critical for the people of Appalachia, Cordellya emphasizes that education is the only way to end generational poverty.
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