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Announcing the Finalists of the 30th Annual Larry Neal Writers' Competition

Wednesday, April 24, 2013
DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities awards recognize the artistic excellence of emerging and established DC writers

The D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH) is proud to congratulate the finalists for the 30th Annual Larry Neal Writers’ Competition.  The competition commemorates the artistic legacy and vision of cultural understanding of Larry Neal, a renowned author, academic and former executive director of the DCCAH.

In March 2013, the DCCAH received more than 200 submissions from emerging and established writers residing in the District of Columbia in the categories of poetry, essays, dramatic writing and short story.

“From students and emerging adults, to the large pool of professional journalists, screenwriters and authors living in Washington, we live in one of the top literary markets in the world,” said Lionell Thomas, Executive Director of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities. “The Larry Neal Writers’ Awards is a chance for the District of Columbia to recognize the outstanding contributions of many of our great writers.”

Winners will be announced at the Larry Neal Writers’ Awards Ceremony on Friday, May 3, 2013 at 6:30 PM at the Hill Center at the Old Naval Hospital, held in partnership with the PEN/Faulker Foundation. Benjamin Saenz, 2013 winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction, will provide opening remarks. The ceremony is the culminating event for the writing competition, which is open to writers residing in the District of Columbia.  




Poetry Finalists

Abdul Ali

D. Gilson

Lisa Pegram


Fiction Finalists

Kathy Crutcher

Binahkaye Joy

Brendan Williams-Childs


Dramatic Writing Finalists

Norman Allen

Stephen Spotswood

Hal Weiner




Poetry Finalists

Quadaja Herriott

Anna Pomper

Maya Wesby

Zachary Wood


Fiction Finalists

Bridget Dease

Lucy Rose Freshour

Chidinma Onuoha


Essay Finalists

Kareema Badawi

Messai Tadesse




Poetry Finalists

Sophia Diggs-Galligan

Seané Hamiel

Ladeisha Meriweather

Alissa Simon

Daisha Wilson


Fiction Finalists

Celia Doherty

Naomi Steinglass


Essay Finalists

Ally Han

Raya Kenney

Josh Taubma



Larry Neal Writers’ Awards Ceremony

Hill Center at the Old Naval Hospital

Friday, May 3, 2013

6:30 PM – 8:00 PM


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The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities provides grants, professional opportunities, education enrichment, and other programs and services to individuals and nonprofit organizations in all communities within the District of Columbia.

The Arts Commission is supported primarily by District government funds and in part by the National Endowment for the Arts