About / Staff/Administration

Director: John Grammer

John Grammer is a Professor of English at Sewanee, where until recently he chaired the English department.  Born and raised in Texas, he received his BA at Vanderbilt University and his PhD at the University of Virginia.  Before coming to Sewanee, he taught at Hollins College in Virginia; since arriving here in 1992 he has taught classes in American Literature and American Studies and has frequently participated in Sewanee's interdisciplinary Humanities Program.  His 1996 book Pastoral and Politics in the Old South won the C. Hugh Holman Award as the best book of the year in Southern literary study, and his essays and reviews have appeared in American Literary History, The Southern Literary Journal, the Sewanee Review, The Oxford American and other journals.  He thinks it's high time he got started on another book project.  John is married to Elizabeth Elkin Grammer, also a Sewanee English professor and Director of the Sewanee Young Writers' Conference, and they have three children.

Administrator: April Alvarez

April Alvarez is the Administrator for the School of Letters. She worked previously in Sewanee's Alumni Office. A native of North Carolina, she holds a BA in English and Journalism from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. April received her MFA in 2015 from the School of Letters.

April serves on the creative council of Rivendell Writers' Colony. She worked for the National Geographic Society before moving to Sewanee, where she lives with her husband, photographer Stephen Alvarez, and two children.


Program Administration

Administrative oversight of the program is provided by the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, under whose authority the program operates. He appoints the program’s director and faculty. In his oversight of the program the Dean is assisted by a standing committee, the School of Letters Committee, chaired by the Director of the School of Letters and consisting of the Chair of the Department of English, Director of the Teacher Education program, the Associate Dean of the College, and two faculty members elected by the College Faculty.

The School of Letters is served as well by an advisory board composed of experienced secondary-school English teachers, professors from distinguished English and Creative Writing programs, and an alumnus of the program. Nominated by the Director and formally appointed by the Dean of the College, the board advises the Director and functions as a mechanism for ongoing assessment and improvement. 










Dick Hall

Dick Hall has taught ninth-grade and eleventh-grade English at the Lovett School in Atlanta, Georgia, for more than 35 years. During that tenure he has served as English department head, upper-school principal, and assistant headmaster. He co-developed Lovett’s American Studies curriculum, uniting the study of American literature with that of history, art, and music. Dick Hall received his B.A. from Eckerd College and his MA and PhD degrees in American Literature from Emory University.



Ferdinand A. Hauslein, Jr.

Ferd Hauslein, who earned his MFA from the School of Letters in 2011, is Director, President, and Chief Executive Officer of International Security, Inc, a global company based in Dallas, Texas. Prior to assuming this post he held executive positions in several other American companies, including Sun Industries and Neiman Marcus. Holder of the B.A. from The College of William and Mary and the MBA from The George Washington University, he serves on governing boards at both institutions. Mr. Hauslein served in the United States Marine Corps from 1967 to 1970.



John Irwin

John Irwin divides his energies about equally between scholarship and verse. His scholarly works include Doubling and Incest/Repetition and Revenge: A Speculative Reading of Faulkner, American Hieroglyphic: The Symbol of the Egyptian Hieroglyphics in the American Renaissance , and A Mystery to a Solution: Poe, Borges, and the Analytical Detective Story . The last book won both the Christian Gauss Prize from Phi Beta Kappa and the Aldo Scaglione Prize from the Modern Language Association. Irwin has also published, under the pen name John Bricuth, three volumes of poetry:The Heisenberg Variations , Just Let Me Say This About That , and As Long as It’s Big . John Irwin was for many years the chairman of the famous Writing Seminars at the Johns Hopkins University, where he still serves as Decker Professor of the Humanities. His recent activities include publishing another critical study, Unless the Threat of Death is Behind Them: Hard-Boiled Fiction and Film Noir, and editing The Hopkins Review, a literary journal that ceased publishing in 1953 but was re-launched, thanks largely to Irwin’s efforts, in 2007.



Kathy Prado

Kathy Prado, the daughter of a high school teacher, has herself taught high school English for more than 30 years, most recently as Chair of the English Department at Carroll High School in Southlake, Texas. Holder of the B.A. from Henderson State University and the M.A. from Texas Women’s University (where she was Outstanding Graduate of 1992), she is certified as a Writing and Grammar Trainer in the New Jersey Writing Project in Texas and as an Advanced Placement teacher in English Literature, English Grammar, and World History. She serves as an essay-reader for the Advanced Placement Examination.



Rosanna Warren

Rosanna Warren is Emma Ann MacLachlan Metcalf Professor in the Humanities at Boston University. The author of four books of poetry (Departure, Stained Glass, Each Leaf Shines Separate, and Snow Day), she has also published, with Stephen Scully, a translation of Euripides's Suppliant Women. She has been awarded, among other honors, the Pushcart Prize, the Award of Merit in Poetry and the Witter Bynner Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the May Sarton Prize, the Lavan Younger Poets Award from the Academy of American Poets, the Ingram Merrill Foundation Award, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies. In 1999 she was elected a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.