The Emrys Foundation Board of Directors 2018 - 2019
President: Kylie Felker, Vice President: Vera Gómez, Secretary: Jerry Salley,
Treasurer: Marion Grier, Past President: Carol Young Gallagher
Amy Anderson, a native of Greenville, is a bibliophile, writer, editor, foodie, vintage enthusiast, and amateur milliner. A former bookseller, she’s been an educator since 1997, starting as an Assistant Professor at North Greenville University and continuing as an English teacher and Journalism adviser for Greenville County Schools. She earned her Bachelor’s in English and Spanish Literature from Clemson University and her Master’s in Post-1660 British Literature from University of South Carolina. Amy has edited cookbooks, yearbooks, newsletters, and student literary magazines. She's an ardent supporter of the arts and enjoys creating new recipes.
Adrienne Burris is the founding director of Greenville Wordsmiths, a nonprofit empowering children to discover their creative voices through writing. She has been developing and implementing innovative programs for young people since 2008, using her background as an Applied Behavior Analysis therapist to intentionally serve children with special educational needs. In Fall 2018, she became the first ARMES Creative Writing Instructor at the Fine Arts Center. Adrienne graduated from Clemson University (2010) with a B.A. in English, then earned her M.A. Writer/Teacher with Distinction at Goldsmiths, University of London (2015).
Kylie Kotowski Felker is the Chief Operating Officer for Foster Victor Wealth Advisors where she focuses on providing progressive solutions for the growing financial services firm. Kylie grew up in Cleveland, Ohio before moving to Greenville to attend Furman University. Kylie met and married her husband Justin in Greenville, and the couple is proud to call the city home. When she isn’t out and about enjoying vibrant Main Street, Kylie enjoys eating, reading and giving back to the community.
Carol Young Gallagher is a longtime Emrys member, Board member and past president of the Board. She grew up in Anderson, attended Agnes Scott College, where she majored in English and received her Masters degree in Education at Wheelock College in Boston, MA. She worked at the Children’s Program at Marshall I. Pickens Hospital for eighteen years, retiring as Director of that program, when her son was born. Also trained in Family Mediation and teaching Peer Mediation, she continued to consult part-time after she retired from the hospital system. Carol spent two years making pottery between receiving her Masters degree and moving to Greenville and holds onto the possibility that she will return to that hobby in the future. A longtime attendee of Sue Inman’s writing workshops, she enjoys writing. For the last four years she has devoted time to The Writers Block Project with Anna Katherine Freeland, facilitating creative writing workshops at Perry Correctional Institution, where they published a book, and more recently at Leath. She is married to Brooks Gallagher and, In addition to their son, they have two other adult children and five grandchildren.
Vera Gómez is a habitual border-crosser between her American upbringing and Mexican heritage. She is a workshop facilitator, performance poet and a teaching poet. Her poetry collection Barrio Voices was released in 2008; her first essay appeared in State of the Heart: Carolina Writers on the Places They Love, Volume II; her poetry has appeared in publications like ARCHIVE; Ties that Bind, Quintet, Kakalak and the Emrys Journal. She supports collaborative work and has teamed with the Indie Grits Festival’s Visones project (2017); presented a Chautauqua Talk on Caesar Chavez (2017); introduced “Improv Poetry” at Read Up, Greenville (2017); and has been part of the Free Verse: Charleston Poetry Festival (2018) and Columbia, SC Rain Poetry Project (2019).
Vera is a past president of Emrys and has been on the board since 2001. By day she works as a writer in the Americas Sustainability Practice of a global Big 4 firm; side gigs as a SmartArt’s teaching poet; and enjoys observing nature and people when she can – which highly influences her own work as a poet. For more information visit www.veragomez.com.
Chris Haire is a long-time alt-weekly editor and writer. During his two decade-career in newspapers, Chris served as an arts and entertainment critic, humorist, and political commentator. Mostly, he's just a guy who once specialized in barbecuing sacred cows over a flaming pit of righteous indignation and devilish just-messing-with-ya. (P.S. Mustard sauce is an abomination.) He has worked at the Charleston City Paper, Honolulu Weekly, and Creative Loafing-Greenville, in addition to writing for scores of altweeklies and appearing on the BBC, CBC radio, and NPR. Under a pen name, Chris has cobbled together a fictional autobiography about the godfather of fake news and is currently putting the finishing touches on a rambling sci-fi detective story about superheroes, sexual perversity, and smart phones. He thinks Jaws is the greatest movie ever made.
Walt Hunter is the author of Forms of a World: Contemporary Poetry and the Making of Globalization (Fordham University Press, 2019) and the co-translator of Atopias: Manifesto for a Radical Existentialism (Fordham University Press, 2017). He was the 2017 South Carolina Arts Commission Artist Fellow in Poetry. He teaches twentieth- and twenty-first-century literature at Clemson University.
Local legend John Jeter is the author of three books, a musical and a play — and has worked as a copy editor and assistant city editor at two major metropolitan daily newspapers. He writes for various magazines and marketing companies and is currently a contract stringer for The New York Times. John earned his master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University. He teaches at Converse College and is proud to report one of his students just got her first byline in the Spartanburg Herald-Journal! Oh, and … John appeared, once, on the Oprah Show.
Marion Grier has been an instructor of world languages, with certification in French/German/ESOL, for over 25 years. Originally from Detroit, she spent one year studying in France as part of the foreign study program at Kalamazoo College, Kalamazoo, MI. She later completed an MBA at Clemson University while working in the accounting, marketing, and language lab departments of the Michelin Tire Corporation. She has conducted many student exchange programs in Germany and has been selected to participate in a wide variety of world language programs.
Josephine McMullen is both an excellent copywriter writer and an avid reader, who is frequently called upon to share her knowledge of marketing strategy and business communications. She leads mainly by example, always doing her best and encouraging others to do the same. Josephine is distinguished by her ability to bring her extensive for-profit marketing experience to the non-profit arena.
Currently as a marketing manager at AnMed Health, Josephine oversees written communications for a 4,000+ employee not-for-profit hospital that serves the Anderson area. Previously, as the principal of Bespoke Communications, she served as a marketing communications consultant and copywriter for a wide variety of businesses. During this time, she was published in an array of local, regional and national publications. She has served on several Boards of Directors, including TEDxGreenville, Greenville Social Media Club, Humane Society of Santa Barbara, Greenville Tech ESL Advisory Board and Furman’s Faith Advisory Council among others.
Kathleen Nalley is the author of the full-length prose poetry collection, Gutterflower (winner of the Bryant-Lisembee Prize from Red Paint Hill Press), as well as the poetry chapbooks Nesting Doll (winner of the SC Poetry Initiative Prize) and American Sycamore (Finishing Line Press). Her poetry has appeared in several anthologies and literary journals nationwide. She was heralded by the Richland Library as one of “10 SC Poets to Watch.” Kathleen holds an MFA from Converse College, teaches literature and writing at Clemson University, and finds books their forever homes at M. Judson Booksellers in Greenville. www.kathleennalley.com
Alice Ratterree, a native of the upstate from Spartanburg SC, serves as Director of Operations at the Metropolitan Arts Council where she facilitates the re-granting process and manages artist programs. She enjoys a career as an award-winning children’s book illustrator. Her published works include Lilliput (Sam Gayton, Peachtree Publishers), The Wolf Keepers (Elise Broach, Christy Ottaviano Books) and Dangerous Jane (Suzanne Slade, Peachtree Publishers), and is a regular contributor with the Community Journals publications. Also a successful classically trained singer, Alice obtained her degrees in vocal performance from Florida State (BM) University and Boston University (MM). She has appeared as a soloist with the Boston Pops, Emmanuel Music (Boston’s leading presenter of Bach cantatas), Asheville Lyric Opera and Brevard Music Center, and has been awarded several honors in voice competitions including the Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions and the American Traditions Competition with the Savannah Music Festival.
Jerry Salley An Asheville, N.C., native and Furman University alumnus, Jerry came back to Greenville after falling in love with the town -- and a hometown girl. His writing and editing career, and his lifelong love of the written word wherever it appears, have taken him through several specialties and industries, most recently as managing editor for the Greenville Journal and Upstate Business Journal. He and his wife, Josephine, and their bemused dogs live in downtown Greenville.
Art Young joined the Emrys Board in 2018. He retired from Clemson University in 2009 as Robert S. Campbell Chair and Professor of English Emeritus at Clemson University. He founded and coordinated (1990-2009) Clemson’s award-winning writing across-the-curriculum program (WAC), a university-wide initiative to improve the communication abilities of all Clemson students. In 2000, Governor Jim Hodges presented him with The Order of the Palmetto in recognition for TIME/Princeton Review selecting Clemson as the Best Public College in the nation on the strength of the WAC program. He has published extensively on Writing Across the Curriculum and in other areas connected to the theory and teaching of writing. At Clemson, he taught undergraduate and graduate courses in Technical Writing and Composition Theory, and in British Romantic and Victorian Literature. He and his wife and professional partner, Donna Reiss, live in Greenville and are avid supporters of the arts. They volunteer at Metropolitan Arts Council, Greenville Center for Creative Arts, and the Warehouse Theatre, among other venues.