Board of Directors
Wanda Craig (Raegan Teller)
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 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.
A native South Carolinian, Charles “Chip” Hall is new to the novel-writing game. Previously, his efforts were focused on speech and stage writing. He uses his writing talents primarily in the political world as an issue activist. In fiction writing, he finds Heinlein, Crichton, Grisham, Harris and Conroy to be inspirations. Outside of writing you will find him at home on the tennis court and camping. You can find him on most social media platforms at Chip Hall.
Dan Mooney (Rex Hurst)
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.
Yvette R. Murray received her BA in English from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She has been published in Emrys Journal, The Petigru Review, Catfish Stew, A Gathering Together, Call and Response Journal and others. She is a 2021 Best New Poet selection, a Watering Hole Fellow and a 2019 Pushcart Prize nominee. Along with SCWA, she is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and a board member of the Poetry Society of South Carolina. Murray lives in Charleston, South Carolina. Find her on Twitter @MissYvettewrites.
Ash Smith has a BFA in creative and professional writing. They currently are working on their first novel. A graduate of Converse College, now Converse University, Smith lives in Spartanburg and has served on previous boards in both Spartanburg and Converse College communities. They are very excited to serve on SCWA’s board and look forward to growing with this community.
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.
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
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.
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.
Brad Land, a mixed race native of South Carolina, studied creative writing at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and at Western Michigan University. Their first book, a memoir titled Goat, (Random House), was a national bestseller and was translated into four languages. Goat was adapted into a film of the same name in 2016, distributed by Paramount Pictures. Land’s second book was the novel Pilgrims Upon the Earth (Random House). They have received two Independent Filmmaker Grants from the South Carolina Film Commission. Land is the writer, director and producer of the short film Boss (2015). Their second short film, Pilgrims, was adapted from their novel in 2019. They have written for GQ, The Oxford American, Quarter After Eight, Rivendale, Third Coast and Ecotone, with work anthologized in the collection, When I Was a Loser. Land has been twice a fellow at MacDowell.
Bob Leventhal served as sales and marketing executive for the O-Cedar Vining cleaning products company for 19 years. He also taught marketing at the University of Dayton. For more than 15 years, Leventhal was a Jewish communal lay leader in Dayton, Ohio. He was a day school president and a JCC membership chair and federation campaign leader. He was Midwest chair of the UJA Young Leadership Cabinet. He even taught 7th graders in his temple’s religious school. In 2001 he chose to combine his MBA and his Masters in Jewish Education to create a unique synagogue consulting practice at the Alban Institute in Herndon, Virginia. Alban was a research, publishing and consulting organization that primarily served mainline Protestant congregations. In those years, Bob worked with congregations from all denominations. He is also the author of Byachad: Synagogue Board Development and Stepping Forward Together: Synagogue Visioning and Planning.
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.
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.
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. 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. 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).
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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