Showing posts with label Marsha White Warren. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Marsha White Warren. Show all posts

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Do You Know about Marsha White Warren? What does she mean to NCWN-West?

We are kept up to date on the literary world by North Carolina Writers' Network. Did you know about the NC Literary Hall of Fame? New inductees this year will include Marsha White Warren who was Executive Director of NCWN in 1987 – 1996. She is responsible for our program, NCWN-West.


This is from Nancy Simpson’s history of NCWN-West:

When NCWN-West Began
During 1990, NCWN Executive Director Marsha Warren mailed a survey to NCWN members living here in the mountains. At the same time, then NC Arts Council Literature Director in Raleigh, Debbie McGill, also mailed a different survey to writers. Both organizations seemed to want to know about the mountain writers. They asked questions about what we needed. Included was a place for comments. The results of both surveys moved these leaders to reach out and help writers in the mountains.

In 1991, I applied for and received an Artist Fellowship in Poetry at NCAC. Soon after I got a call from NCAC Literary Director Debbie McGill congratulating me and asking me to come have dinner with her in Sylva (a two and a half hour drive for me at the time.) I immediately said, “Yes.”

A few days later, I received a formal letter on NCAC stationery signed by Kathryn Stripling Byer. That letter was sent to all writers in the area, asking us to come to a meeting on the same evening that I was invited to have dinner with Debbie Mc Gill. I rode over the mountains with Bettie Sellers of Young Harris, Georgia (she would become Poet Laureate of Georgia) who had also received a letter.

At dinner before the meeting, Debbie McGill asked me to help form a writing group in the mountains west of Asheville. I said I would. That evening in Jackson County, Rita Rudd, a writer who lived there, volunteered to get organized in Jackson County. I took a copy of the membership list of NCWN and NCAC members living in Clay County (Hayesville), in Cherokee County (Murphy), and in Macon County (Franklin). I set up a meeting for NCWN members in those three counties. We met in Murphy. …

I will always be grateful to Marsha Warren, who worked with dedication to get NCWN West organized. She is the one who named the counties and areas to be served as NCWN West: Cherokee County, Clay County, Graham County, Haywood County, Jackson County, Macon County, Swain County, Transylvania County, and adjacent counties in Georgia, Tennessee and South Carolina. During my service as Program Coordinator, I was asked to include Qualla Boundary.”  Read more here.

SOUTHERN PINES—On Sunday, October 7, at 2:00 pm at the Weymouth Center for the Arts & Humanities in Southern Pines, the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame will welcome five new inductees.
James W. Clark, Jr., Randall Kenan, Jill McCorkle, Penelope Niven, and Marsha White Warren will join the sixty inductees currently enshrined.

Marsha Warren 
Marsha White Warren was an elementary school teacher, poet, and children’s book author when she became Executive Director of the North Carolina Writers’ Network in 1987, only two years after its founding. She would serve in that role until 1996. During those years she helped Sam Ragan develop and open the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame, as well as serving on numerous state and national literary boards and as a consultant to literary centers in Tennessee, Massachusetts, and Idaho. In 1991, she also became director of the Paul Green Foundation and is still with the Foundation after twenty-seven years. In that position, she has overseen $575,000 in grants to nonprofits that support the arts and human rights. Her awards include the John Tyler Caldwell Award for the Humanities, R. Hunt Parker Memorial Award for Lifetime Contributions to Literature, Sam Ragan Award for Contributions to the Fine Arts, and an Honorary Doctor of Letters from St. Andrews College. She lives in Chapel Hill.

Like Nancy Simpson, I am grateful to Marsha White Warren for creating NCWN-West. I moved to NC in 1995, just as our program was taking off and building community for writers here in the mountains. 
Thanks to Nancy, Kay Byer and to Marsha Warren, we are a thriving organization, the western arm of NCWN, but many, many writers and poets don’t know how we began. Now you do. 

Congratulations to Marsha Warren, 2018 NC Hall of Fame Inductee.