Board Governance

Mission Statement


Friends of Writers enriches American poetry and fiction by cultivating new and vital literary voices.



Friends of Writers Board of Directors

Ellen Voigt* 1991 - 2019
Debra Allbery (Ex Officio)2010 –
Joan Aleshire, Founding Dir 1991 -
Martha Rhodes* 1991 - 2019
Daniel Tobin* 2005 - 2019
Eleanor Wilner* 2006 - 2019
Elizabeth T. Gray, Jr.*2010 - 2019
David Haynes 2010 - 2019
Abigail Wender* 2010 - 2019
Peter Klank 2011 - 2020
Maeve Kinkead 2011 - 2020
Geoff Kronik 2012 - 2018
Mary Jo Thompson 2012 - 2018
Carrie Mar 2014 - 2017
Ellen McCulloch-Lovell
2014 - 2017
Gabrielle Calvorocesci2016-2019
Emily Sinclair2016-2019
Sharon Gelman2017-2020
Dean Bakopoulos2017-2020
Larissa Vidal2017-2020
Catherine Brown
2012 - 2018Terms Completed
Rolf Yngve 2012 - 2018Terms Completed
Janet Crossen 2014 - 2017Term Completed
Maudelle Driskell 2008 - 2017Terms Completed
A.Van Jordan 2012 - 2015Term completed
Mike Puican 2012 - 2015Term completed
Cheryl Baldi 1995 - 2012 Terms completed
Melissa Hotchkiss 1999 - 2006 Terms completed
Michael Collier 2000 - 2006 Terms completed
Pete Turchi (Ex Officio)2002 - 2008 Terms completed
Catherine Barnett 2004 - 2010 Terms completed
Cammy Thomas 2005 - 2011 Terms completed
Nan Cuba 2005 - 2014 Terms completed
Shannon Cain 2006 - 2009 Term completed
Jasmine Beach-Ferrara 2006 - 2011 Terms completed
Judy French 2006 - 2009 Term completed
Jynne Martin 2007 - 2010 Term completed
Vyvyane Loh 2007 - 2013 Terms completed
C. Dale Young 2007 - 2010 Term completed
Peter Turchi 2008 - 2011 Term completed
*Executive Committee



  • The Board will include 15-20 voting members.
  • Board terms are defined as three-year, renewable, usually beginning and ending in August.
  • Active, participating Board members will always be encouraged to renew their terms when they expire. Term limits, though, give members a chance to take a leave from the Board when circumstances and other commitments make such active participation difficult. Outgoing and former Board members are welcome to join the Board’s Advisory Panel(s).
  • We are committed to strong Warren Wilson alumni and faculty presence on the Board.
  • We are committed to 100% active participation by members. It is assumed that during a 3-year term, only exceptional circumstances will interfere with a Board member’s attendance at least 4 of the 6 standing meetings or with active involvement in at least one of its projects.
  • The MFA Program Director holds an Ex Officio appointment; an individual who no longer holds that position is also eligible for a subsequent regular term.
  • The Board may be complemented by an adjunct Advisory Panel or panels, whose members will bear neither fiscal responsibility nor voting privileges but whose skills, experience and active participation in Friends’ projects are crucial resources. Advisors would also be welcome at Board meetings although attendance is not expected.  A term on the Board proper is not a requirement for invitation to serve as an Advisor.
  • The Board shall establish any internal or adjunct committees necessary to the efficient discharge of its responsibilities.
  • A 2/3 vote from the Board shall be required to dissolve Friends of Writers.  Upon dissolution of Friends of Writers any assets remaining after payment of or provision for its debts and liabilities shall, consistent with the mission of Friends, be paid to a charitable organization with similar missions that are exempt under the provisions of section 501c 3of the IRS Code.  Upon dissolution, no part of the net assets or net earnings of Friends of Writers shall inure to the benefit of or be paid or distributed to any Board Member of the organization.


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