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The Lambda Literary Foundation announced today that Charles Flowers will serve as its new executive director, effective October 15. The appointment comes after several months of reorganization and extensive planning for the future by the Board of Directors.
“We are enormously excited about this appointment,” said Katherine V. Forrest, president of the Board. “We feel fortunate indeed to have found an executive director of this caliber to lead us into a new era for the Foundation. Charles brings a depth of knowledge and immersion in our literature, a wide range of experience in all facets of publishing, a high energy presence, and a vision of the Foundation’s future that we fully share. Under his leadership the Foundation will expand its role, becoming the dynamic and highly visible service organization our entire literary community deserves.”
A fifteen year-plus veteran of publishing and arts administration, Flowers has served as the co-chair of the Publishing Triangle, the association of lesbians and gay men in publishing, and since 2001 has been Associate Director of the Academy of American Poets. He is the founding editor of Bloom, a remarkable journal for lesbian and gay writing that Edmund White has called “the most exciting new queer literary publication to emerge in years.” As a book editor he has worked with such authors as Urvashi Vaid, E. Lynn Harris, Joan Larkin, Michelangelo Signorile, Sarah Schulman, Andrew Holleran, Keith Boykin, Minnie Bruce Pratt, and Stacey D’Erasmo, among many others. He is the co-author of Golden Men: The Power of Gay Midlife (with Harold Kooden, Ph.D.), and his poems have appeared in Gulf Coast, Barrow Street, Indiana Review, and Puerto del Sol. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Vanderbilt University and received his M.F.A. in Poetry from the University of Oregon.
“I am thrilled to be part of the Lambda team as the Foundation enters its second decade,” Flowers adds. “I value the work of Lambda and welcome its goal of being a complete service organization for the entire GLBTQ literary community–authors, editors, booksellers, educators, librarians, and especially, the GLBTQ reader.”
Plans for the 2006 Lambda Literary Awards and a dynamic, new website (to be launched in January) have already begun, while the Foundation continues to review the viability of two of its publications, Lambda Book Report and James White Review. Flowers urges the literary community to contact Lambda during its planning. “In the weeks ahead, we will be sending a survey to our members as we review our current programs and explore new initiatives,” Flowers explained. “We value your opinions and feedback. Let us hear from you.”
Founded in 1996, Lambda Literary Foundation exists to celebrate and enhance GLBTQ literature in all its dimensions. The Lambda Literary Awards, the most visible expression of its mission, recognize annually the most significant books published in more than twenty categories, from fiction to poetry to spiritual writing to best debut novel. Currently, the Foundation is engaged in extensive planning for new programs and initiatives.