Christopher Bakken, Program Director
Program Director, Christopher Bakken, is the author of the culinary memoir, Honey, Olives, Octopus: Adventures at the Greek Table, as well as three books of poetry, Eternity & Oranges, Goat Funeral and After Greece. He is also co-translator of The Lions’ Gate: Selected Poems of Titos Patrikios. His work has appeared in The Paris Review, Ploughshares, New England Review, The Iowa Review, and Best American Poetry 2016. Bakken holds a Ph.D. in Literature and Creative Writing from University of Houston, and an M.F.A. in Poetry from Columbia University. He has served as a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Bucharest and is currently Department Chair and Frederick F. Seely Professor of English at Allegheny College. Bakken won Food & Wine Magazine’s Best Burger Contest in 2005 and has cooked live on the CBS Saturday Morning Early Show. He organizes an organic produce cooperative out of his garage in Pennsylvania.
Natalie Bakopoulos is the author of The Green Shore (Simon & Schuster), and her work has appeared in Tin House, VQR, The Iowa Review, The New York Times, Granta, Ploughshares, and O. Henry Prize Stories. She received her MFA from the University of Michigan, has received fellowships from the Camargo and MacDowell foundations, and was a 2015 Fulbright Fellow in Athens, Greece. She’s an Assistant Professor of creative writing at Wayne State University.
Aimee Nezhukumatathil is the author of three books of poetry: Lucky Fish, winner of the Hoffer Grand Prize for Prose and Independent Books; At the Drive-In Volcano; and Miracle Fruit. With Ross Gay, she co-authored Lace & Pyrite, a chapbook of nature poems (Organic Weapon Arts, 2014). She is the poetry editor of Orion magazine and her poems have appeared in the Best American Poetry series,American Poetry Review, New England Review, Poetry, Ploughshares, and Tin House. Awards for her writing include an NEA Fellowship in poetry and the Pushcart Prize. As professor of English at The State University of New York at Fredonia, she was awarded the Chancellor’s Medal of Excellence and named the campus-wide Hagan Young Scholar. She is the Grisham Writer-in-Residence at the University of Mississippi’s MFA program in creative writing. World of Wonder, her collection of illustrated nature essays, is forthcoming from Milkweed Editions.
Joanna Eleftheriou studied at Cornell University, Old Dominion University, the Center for Ottoman, Byzantine, and Modern Greek Studies in Birmingham, UK, and the University of Missouri, where she earned a doctorate in creative writing. She is Assistant Professor of Literature at the University of Houston-Clear Lake, and her translations and creative work have appeared in The Crab Orchard Review, Apalachee Review,Neoskopos, and The Common.