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Lisa Clemmons Stott

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This Year



Public radio WUIS and UIS to host evening with Illinois’ poet laureate

April 15, 2004

SPRINGFIELD - Illinois Poet Laureate Dr. Kevin Stein will share his poetry and philosophies at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 27, in Brookens Auditorium, located on the lower level of Brookens Library on the University of Illinois at Springfield campus. Stein’s appearance is being hosted by public radio WUIS (91.9 Springfield) WIPA (89.3 Pittsfield). The presentation, as well as a dessert reception and book signing immediately following, are free and open to the public. Governor and Mrs. Rod Blagojevich have been invited to attend.

Brad Swanson, WUIS general manager, explained, “When Governor Blagojevich selected Professor Stein as the state’s poet laureate in 2001, we at WUIS took a special interest in his comments regarding the possibility of creating a radio program about poetry.  Our classical music host, Karl Scroggin, interviewed Dr. Stein for a fine arts report, which in turn led to discussions with Stein about reading his poetry for a live audience, which we will then re-broadcast.

“We hope that the community will come out for this presentation to welcome Dr. Stein,” said Swanson. “As a public radio station, our mission includes creating opportunities both in our programming and outreach that touch both the mind and the heart.”

Stein, professor of English at Bradley University, has written five books of poetry and three books of literary criticism -- including Chance Ransom (2000) and Bruised Paradise (1996) -- and was co-editor of Illinois Voices: An Anthology of Twentieth-Century Poetry. Stein has received numerous awards, including a nomination for the Pulitzer Prize in 2001. In naming Stein poet laureate, Blagojevich noted that his poems are “uniquely Illinois, mix satire and stoicism, and provide narratives of hard work and hard knocks.”

In addition to his public presentation, Stein will also conduct a master poetry class with UIS students and will have dinner with selected creative writing students and professors.

Previous Illinois Poet Laureates were Gwendolyn Brooks, who served from 1968 until her death in 2000, Carl Sandburg (1962-1968), and Howard B. Austin (1936-1962).

Co-sponsors of the event at UIS are Friends of Brookens Library, Culturazzi, Writers’ Repertory, Office of Student Life, and Speakers’ Award Committee.

WUIS-WIPA is listener-supported public radio broadcast from the UIS campus.  The station’s mission is to satisfy a curious, societally engaged audience through programming and community outreach.  For more information about this event, or other events and original programming at WUIS, go to

    The University of Illinois at Springfield, one of three U of I campuses, is a small, public liberal arts university that offers 40 degree programs – 20 bachelor’s, 19 master’s, and the Doctorate of Public Administration. UIS has a special mission in public affairs and service and is known for extraordinary internships, a wireless campus, extensive online offerings, and a commitment to teaching.