Pitzer Spotlights

2005-2006 Spotlight Archives

Dana Levin '87 Wins Prestigious Poetry Award

Dana Levin '87
Dana Levin '87

Dana Levin '87 is one of ten recipients of the 2005 Whiting Writers' Awards. The awards ($40,000 awarded to each of the ten recipients) have been given annually since 1985 by the Whiting Foundation (program run through Harvard University) to emerging writers of exceptional talent and promise. Levin, the author of two books, won her award for her extraordinary talent and promise a poet. Levin's first book, In the Surgical Theatre, was awarded the 1999 American Poetry Review/ Honickman First Book Prize and went on to receive nearly every award available to first books and emerging poets. Her work has appeared in many anthologies and magazines, including The Atlantic Monthly, Poetry and Volt. Her second book, Wedding Day, is out from Copper Canyon Press.

Levin has received three Pushcart Prizes, a 1999 National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, 2004 fellowships from the Library of Congress and the Rona Jaffe Foundation, and the 2005 Whiting Award. Levin is a 1987 graduate of Pitzer College and a 1992 graduate of The Graduate Creative Writing Program at New York University. Levin teaches in the MFA Program at Warren Wilson College and chairs the Creative Writing, Humanities and Interdisciplinary Studies Department at College of Santa Fe.

Professor Emeritus of English and World Literature Jill Benton recalls Levin and her innate talent. “Dana’a poetry profoundly melds personal and public, her rhythms and images vivid, startling. As a high school senior, she chose Pitzer after sitting for one hour in the Scott lobby. Said she, as I remember it: ‘The place just was right for me. I felt it on my skin.’ It surely was. Professors Barry Sanders and Jim Bogen encouraged her art. We all did. Her honors thesis in Creative Writing, titled “Res” (1987), is located in the Marquis Library.”

--Susan Andrews