The Harold and Ethel L. Stellfox Visiting Scholars and Writers Program

robert frost on the steps of Old West with students

Robert Frost (center) poses on the steps of Old West with Dickinson students in 1959.

Jean Louise Stellfox ’60 was inspired to become an English teacher after meeting Robert Frost during the poet’s visit to Dickinson in 1959. When she died suddenly in 2003, Stellfox’s estate provided $1.5 million to the college to continue her mission of inspiring students through literature. Stellfox wished to honor her parents with her gift, so The Harold and Ethel L. Stellfox Visiting Scholars and Writers Program was created and continues to bring renowned literary figures to campus.

While in residency at Dickinson, the distinguished recipient visits classes, holds a seminar for aspiring writers, gives readings and presentations and shares meals with students and faculty. A monetary award accompanies the residency.

Read more about the previous recipients, and view photos from their visits to Dickinson:

2014 – Paul Muldoon, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet

"Paul Muldoon to Receive Stellfox Award"

2012 – David Henry Hwang, Tony Award-winning playwright

"M. Butterfly Author to Present Lecture"
"The Icing Is Not the Cake"

2011 – Richard Russo, Pulitzer Prize-winning author (spring), and Man Booker Prize recipient Margaret Atwood (fall)

 "Telling the Handmaid's Tale"  (Atwood)
"Serious Wow Factor"  (Atwood)
Atwood interview audio feature
“Richard Russo to Receive Stellfox”
Richard Russo Accepts Stellfox Award

2009 – Maxine Kumin, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet

“Kumin Receives Stellfox Award”
“Kumin Offers a Powerful, Empowering Literary Event”
Kumin Receives Stellfox Award
Photos of Maxine Kumin's Visit

2008 – Mario Vargas Llosa, novelist, playwright, essayist, journalist, literary critic and 2010 recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature

“Honoring the Storyteller”
“Author Vargas Llosa Provokes, Inspires”
Video of Llosa's Stellfox Address

2007 – Edward Albee, three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright

“Who's Afraid of Edward Albee?”

2006 – Rita Dove, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet

“Excitement for Dove Soars”

2005 – Ian McEwan, Man Booker Prize-winning British novelist

“Gift Brings First of Many Literary Greats”