Tricia Knoll is an Oregon poet who grew up in an affluent suburb of Chicago. She earned degrees in literature from Stanford University (BA) and Yale University (MAT). For decades she worked in communications for the City of Portland. Starting in 2014, she delved into current discussions on race relations in the United States to examine the influences of ancestry, education, childhood experiences and more on her understanding of her own white privilege and how she can work to change the influences of her background. Many of the poems in How I Learned to Be White have appeared in anthologies or journals related to racial justice. She spent three years on Portland's Human Rights Commission with an intense interest in people who were homeless and people with disabilities. She has a minor speech disability.