Elizabeth Woody (Navajo / Warm Springs / Wasco / Yakama, and an enrolled member of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs) was named Oregon’s 8th Poet Laureate for a two-year tenure, which she began in May.
Poet Natalie Diaz attended Old Dominion University on a full athletic scholarship. After playing professional basketball in Austria, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and Turkey she returned to ODU for an MFA in writing. Her publications include Prairie Schooner, Iowa Review, Crab Orchard Review, among others. Her work was selected by Natasha Trethewey, 2012 U.S. Poet Laureate, for Best New Poets. She has received the Nimrod/Hardman Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry, and her debut book, When My Brother Was An Aztec, was published by the prestigious Copper Canyon Press.
The conference was the very first Native Hawaiian Writers and Literature conference. In addition to the 400+ conference attendees, it attracted over 30 Native Hawaiian published writers who participated in multiple ways including as panelists, performers, workshop presenters and moderators and keynote speakers.