Board of Directors


Directors

 


Catherine C. Con
Director/Technology

A short story writer, Catherine C. Con, received her BA in English literature from Fu-Jen Catholic University, Taiwan, and an MS in system science from Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge. She is a computer science instructor at the University of South Carolina Upstate. Her short stories have been published in Emrys Journal, Tint Journal, The Bare Life Review, The Petigru Review, HerStry, Shards (Shards.glassmountainmag.com), Dunes Review, Emrys Journal Online (Medium.com), National Women's History Museum, Catfish Stew, Change Seven, Longridge Review and Limit Experience Journal. Con was nominated for the 2020 PEN/Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers; selected for "2020 Local Authors" by Greenville County Library and was a finalist for the Anne C. Barnhill Prize for Creative Nonfiction 2021.



Wanda Craig (Raegan Teller)
Director/VP, Membership

Wanda Craig, writing as Raegan Teller, is the award-winning author of the Enid Blackwell Mystery Series. Two of her novels received Honorable Mention in the Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards, with judges’ comments including “one of the best I’ve read this year,” “great job combining plot and character,” and “great storyteller.” She also has published short fiction. Before becoming a full-time writer, Craig was president of W.B. Craig & Associates Inc., a management consulting company specializing in organizational and management development, communication skills, performance management, facilitation and project management. She was also an executive coach. In addition to serving on the SCWA Board, Wanda leads the SCWA Short Fiction Virtual Group and is also a member of Sisters in Crime, Southeastern Writers Association, Charlotte Writers Club, and the Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi). She is a summa cum laude graduate of Queens University, Charlotte.



Paul Davis
Director/VP, Events & Education

Paul Davis is a prize-winning journalist and Brown University graduate. As a freelance writer and reporter, he has written for large and small newspapers from the Tampa Tribune to The New York Times. At the Providence Journal, he chaired the newspaper’s in-house writing committee. He won awards for his stories about the homeless, New England’s struggling fishermen, the Narragansett Indians and the working poor. The Journal submitted his seven-part series on the Rhode Island-South Carolina-West Africa slave trade for a Pulitzer Prize. A Florida native, filmgoer and history buff, he helped launch the Historical Writers of America. He recently moved to Aiken, where he works as a book coach and freelance writer.


Austin Hehir
Director/Chapter Liaison

Austin Hehir is an American author, writer and content creator. He serves as the chapter lead for the Charleston Branch of SCWA. He has been featured in such magazines as Short Edition, The Jasper Project's Fall Lines and Friday Flash Fiction for his stories and poems and has released his own book of poetry, Nostalgic Tendencies. Hehir creates cultural and media analysis video essays online to grow his audience and share his love of stories. More information can be found at https://linktr.ee/austinhehir. He is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a BS in mechanical engineering and a minor in biomedical engineering. He has authored a variety of technical publications as well during his career through various organizations, including NASA, AIAA and Boeing. He currently works at Boeing South Carolina as a mechanical systems engineer. When he is not writing at his favorite coffee shop, he spends his time reading, playing hockey and walking the beach with his dog, Misty.


Ralph Jarrells
Director

Ralph Jarrells is a native South Carolinian who is retired and lives in West Columbia. His experience includes senior vice president of an international franchise company, VP/editorial director of a trade publishing company and VP of marketing of a NYSE company. In retirement, Jarrells started an award-winning video production company and began writing seriously in 2017. He has three novels published by an independent publishing company, available from Amazon, and two more in process. He co-founded a 501(c)(3). Jarrells has traveled to 48 states and 44 countries. Among his honors are two Presidential Volunteer Service Gold Medals, Presidential Lifetime Service Award, Humanitarian Award from The Royal Society of St. George, delegate to the 2017 World Hunger Symposium at the United Nations and 28 international creative trophies. He believes research, imagination and observation are the answer to most problems. To learn more about him, go to: www.ralphejarrellsauthor.com, www.illgottengain.net, www.fieryredhair.com and www.jesus-judas.com.



Mike Lee
Past President

Mike Lee is a retired business executive who helps people and organizations develop effectively.
His professional background involved business corporate and operating roles, including the human resources/people and organization development functions. In addition to serving on volunteer boards, Lee is an avid reader and a writer. Lee has been a member of the SCWA board since 2018 and prior to serving as president had roles as treasurer, secretary and 1st vice president. Lee is a graduate of Sir George Williams University (Concordia), Montreal, Canada. He is inspired by positive people who try to improve their lives and the lives of others.
 




Dan Mooney (Rex Hurst)
Director

Born into the blue-collar city of Buffalo, New York, Dan Mooney (Rex Hurst) was traumatized as a small child by the suffocating rabbits scene in the animated adaptation of Watership Down. Since, his mind twists toward the macabre, until his inevitable blossoming as a horror writer. When not writing he is an assistant professor of composition, public speaking and literature. Hurst is the author of the horror novels The Foot Doctor Letters: A Serial Killer Speaks Out, What Hell May Come and the sci-fi novel Across the Wounded Galaxy. He also has written several novellas. He is also co-host of the weekly radio show Write On SC on the art of writing. Back episodes can be found on his website at Rexhurst.com. 


Abby Morales
Director/1st Vice President

Abby Morales is a Palmetto State native who self-published her first novel to get the bull out of the pen. When Jamie Morgan (2016) was published she joined a small group of women who have written in the Western genre. While she enjoys the quick whip of crafting short stories, the novel still allures; she is working on a historical fiction piece that she hopes to traditionally publish. A graduate of the University of South Carolina, she now works for the non-profit organization SC811 as an accounting and payroll specialist. A working professional by day, she is devoted to writing and developing the love of writing in others. 


Yvette Murray
Director

Yvette R. Murray received her B.A. in English from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pa. She has been published in Fall Lines, The Petigru Review, Catfish Stew, Barzakh, Genesis Science Fiction magazine and on www.agatheringtogether and www.akashicbooks.com. She is a 2019 Pushcart Prize nominee. She is working on her first poetry collection and a children’s book series. 



Sharon Thomas
Director/Secretary

Sharon Clemmons Thomas is an aspiring author working on her first memoir and considers herself beyond blessed by the opportunity to join the SC Writer’s Association Board of Directors. A Palmetto native, Thomas has served the S.C. nonprofit community for nearly 30 years as a program manager, executive director, board member and for the past five years as an organizational/governance consultant. She lives in rural Berkeley County with her husband, Bill Thomas, and together they have five children, 10 grandchildren and two very spoiled pups.






Lynn Volkenant
Director/Treasurer

Dr. Lynn A. Volkenant is a recent transplant to Charleston, S.C., from Minnesota. She has been a PK-12 educator and leader for over 40 years and still loves teaching and learning. In 2020, Volkenant completed her doctorate in educational leadership at The University of St. Thomas. Her dissertation was titled Under a Patriarchal Pall: The Hidden Conflict Between Priests and Women Catholic School Principals: An Autoethnography. She also has a BA in education and honors English, an MAED in students at risk and an EDS in principal and superintendent leadership. She has published in a variety of Minnesota and Wyoming poetry and short fiction publications and currently is writing a memoir called Little Bare Feet on the Floor that explores her adventure going from two sons to five sons in a matter of a few months.



Dr. Kasie Whitener
President

Dr. Kasie Whitener is Founder of Clemson Road Creative, a management consulting company, and a lecturer at the University of South Carolina teaching strategic management and entrepreneurship. She was named a 2021 Fresh Voice in the Humanities by the Governor of South Carolina for her work on the radio show “Write On, SC” and with the South Carolina Writers’ Association. She is the author of two novels: After December (Chrysalis Press 2019) and Before Pittsburgh (2021) and two academic texts Practical Entrepreneurism (Great River Learning, 2020) and Strategic Management (Kendall Hunt, 2021). She co-authored the nonfiction manual Redesign Work Volume 1: A Beginner’s Guide to Autonomy (Clemson Road Publishing 2020). She is a member of South Carolina Humanities Speakers Bureau, and has delivered workshops for the Pat Conroy Literary Center, Richland Library, and Fairfax County Library, among others.

Advisors



Jayne Bowers
Advisor/Publications

A semi-retired educator, Jayne Bowers’s work has appeared in The Petigru Review, the Main Street Rag, the Ensign and Guideposts. She’s the author of Musings of a Missionary Mom, Eve’s Sisters and Crossing the Bridge: Succeeding in a Community College and Beyond. First-place winner in the 2016 Carrie McCray Nonfiction Award, Bowers is also an editor and designer of the Camden Chapter’s two anthologies, Serving Up Memory and What I Wish I Could Tell You.


Peter Morton Coan
Advisor/Publications

Peter Morton Coan is the award-winning author of Toward A Better Life, the critically acclaimed biography; Taxi: The Harry Chapin Story, the generational novel; The Last Baby Boomer; and the bestselling Ellis Island Interviews: In Their Own Words – the definitive work about Ellis Island and the immigrants who passed through it. He is also the author of Finding Martha, his own story of adoption, redemption and Christian faith, and the third book in his testimony trilogy, The Angel School – Book of Wisdom. His work has appeared in Time, The New York Times, Travel & Leisure and many other publications. He was the executive editor of World Tennis magazine and Boating Industry magazine. He lives in New York and Myrtle Beach, S.C. He has two daughters.



Sue Cryer
Advisor/Publications

Sue Cryer is a former newspaper correspondent and contributor for the The State Newspaper (S.C.), The Newburyport Daily News (Mass.), The Chatham Courier (N.Y.) and The Register Star (Hudson, N.Y.). She currently resides in Chapin, S.C., where she does freelance writing, runs her home business (Sue’s Home Solutions), serves as member and blog writer to the South Carolina Writers Association Board of Directors and has raised her family. She also served on local PTO and HOA boards in addition to volunteering with the Chapin High School Band Boosters and church-based grief group counseling, domestic abuse assistance and bereavement events.


Dorree Lynn
Advisor/Publications

Dr. Dorree Lynn, author of three books as well as hundreds of articles, was born, raised and educated in New York City’s cultured environment. She has lived an abundantly adventurous life that has taken her to most of the United States and between 75 and 80 countries “to visit, to live, to learn, to study and to lecture and/or consult.” She is the author of Sex for Grownups (HCI, Simon and Schuster), When the Man You Love is Ill, Doing Your Best for Your Partner Without Losing Yourself (Marlowe & Company, Division of Avalon) and Getting Sane Without Going Crazy (Xlibris). Lynn co-founded and for many years co-led an Integrative Healing Psychology Training Institute. She has sat on the boards of various nonprofit organizations and has taught, supervised others, lectured and consulted to businesses large and small, received awards and served in the many capacities, constituting  a full professional life. Lynn founded a successful website, Fiftyand Furthermore, developed and hosted her own segment, On the Couch, for AARP’s award-winning TV show “My Generation.” She also hosted her own radio shows, became a TV personality and eventually a known expert on relationships, intimacy, sexuality, S-aging and integrative health. Lynn was a long-term member of the executive board of Arts for the Aging (AFTA) in Washington, D.C., and the executive board of the American Academy of Psychotherapists. She has served on the editorial board of the magazine Voices, the official publication of AAP. Lynn believes that she was the first non-professional writer to be elected to the Women’s National Press Club. Lynn still sees and supervises select clients, is writing her fourth book and at almost 80 resides somewhat more quietly with her husband, Ken, on Johns Island, a suburb of Charleston, S.C. They live in a bucolic setting on the water with boats as part of their lifestyle. Writing has again begun to take over her life.



Sean Scapellato
Advisor/Legal

Sean A. Scapellato is a writer of fiction and essays, a former creative writing teacher at Charleston County School of the Arts and now a lawyer in Charleston, S.C. He assisted Pat Conroy during the writing of and book tour for South of Broad. Scapellato is also a contributing writer to Our Prince of Scribes: Writers Remember Pat Conroy.


Mary Sturgill
Advisor/Conference

Mary Sturgill is an award-winning journalist who is an anchor/reporter for News 19 WLTX in Columbia, S.C. As a journalist she’s lived all over the country covering stories on every topic. Originally from North Carolina, she graduated from University of North Carolina Chapel Hill with a degree in English literature. She attended graduate school at Arizona State University to receive her master's degree in journalism and mass communications at the Walter Cronkite School. Whether it’s with her blogs, her talks or the stories she tells every day, her motivation is to shed light, to empower and to make a difference.

 


Art Turfa
Advisor/Publications

Originally from Pennsylvania, Art Turfa has lived with his family in the Midlands of South Carolina since 2005. His roots, along with places where he has lived or traveled, are never far from his mind or poetry. The concept of place occupies an important place in his poetry and literary fiction. He has had several careers at the same time. Currently retired, he is a Lutheran pastor and a retired Army reservist with veteran status. In addition, he taught English, German, history and religion on the secondary and post-secondary levels. Since 2005 he has been an adjunct instructor for English at Midlands Technical College. Among his pleasures are traveling, reading, spending time with his family, walking Magda the Chocolate Lab, supporting Pittsburgh teams and mentoring poets/writers. Turfa also has been published in U.S. and international print and electronic journals and was in the Top Ten of Pangolin Literary Review 2019 Poetry Prize. His books are: Places and Times (2015, eLectio Publishing), Accents (2017, Amazon KDP), Gemini (2018, Broad River Books), Saluda Reflections (2018, Finishing Line Press), A Village Remembered with artist Carol Worthington-Levy (2019, Amazon KDP) and All in the Family with artist Carol Worthington-Levy (2019/2020).



Amber Wheeler Bacon
Advisor/Conference

Amber Wheeler Bacon is a writer, editor, teacher and literacy coach. She has an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars and is on the board of directors of the South Carolina Writers Association. Her work has appeared in EpiphanyFive PointsPost RoadNew Ohio Review, Crazyhorse and Witness. You can find her writing online at  PloughsharesCRAFT, Fiction Writer’s Review and New South. She is the recipient of the 2018 Breakout Writers Prize sponsored by The Author’s Guild and a scholarship from the Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference. Her story collection, We Were Vessels, was one of five finalists for the 2020 Hub City Press’s C. Michael Curtis Short Story Book Prize and a finalist for Moon City Press’s 2020 Short Fiction Award. She has been a staff reader for Ploughshares and a fiction editor at Four Way Review. She currently serves as daily editor at the Southern Review of Books and a reader for CRAFT Literary. She teaches English at Coastal Carolina University

  


Ferguson Williams
Advisor/Publications

Ferguson Williams is a fiction writer from Socastee, S.C. Her work has appeared in Azure: A Journal of Literary ThoughtLiterally StoriesThe Petigru Review and Five:2:One Magazine. She’s supposed to be working on her debut collection of short stories, but Twitter is just too addictive. Find her there at @Ferg_Williams. 

  

  


Susan Zurenda
Advisor/Publications

After teaching literature, composition and creative writing to thousands of high school and college students for 33 years, Zurenda turned her attention to putting a novel in her heart on paper, the genesis of which started with a short story that won a fiction prize some years ago. She presented her debut novel, Bells for Eli, to readers on March 2, 2020. During her years of teaching at Spartanburg Community College and then as an AP English teacher at Spartanburg High School, Zurenda published short stories and won numerous regional awards such as the South Carolina Fiction Prize (twice), the Porter Fleming Competition, The Southern Writers Symposium Emerging Writers Fiction Contest, The Hub City Hardegree Contest in Fiction, Alabama Conclave First Novel Chapter Contest, and The Jubilee Writing Competition (twice).  Since 2018, she has published six stories in literary magazines. 


 

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