2023 Featured Speaker
LeAnne Howe is an enrolled citizen of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. She is the Eidson Distinguished Professor of American Literature in English at the University of Georgia. Howe is the author of novels, plays, poetry, and screenplays. She is the on-camera narrator for a 90-minute PBS documentary, Indian Country Diaries, Spiral of Fire, 2006. She is the co-producer and writer for the 56-minute Searching for Sequoyah, airing nationally last November 2021 on PBS stations, for which she and producer James M. Fortier won a Telly Award.
Howe’s awards include: the 2022 Richard Beale Davis Award for Distinguished Lifetime Service to Southern Letters by The Society for the Study of Southern Literature, an American Book Award, Western Literature Association’s 2015 Distinguished Achievement Award; the inaugural 2014 MLA Prize for Studies in Native American Literatures; and a 2012 United States Artists Ford Fellowship, among others. Her monograph, Savage Conversations, Coffee House Press, (2019) is the story of Mary Todd Lincoln and the Savage Indian ghost she claimed tortured her nightly in 1875 was performed in NYC in September on Govenors Island.
In August 2020 two books were released: Famine Pots: The Choctaw Irish Gift Exchange 1847-Present, Michigan State University Press co-edited with Irish scholar, Padraig Kirwan; and When The Light of The World Was Subdued, Our Songs Came Through: A Norton Anthology of Native Nations Poetry, co-edited with U.S. Poet Laureate Joy Harjo and Jennifer Elise Foerster.