upcoming grant deadline: 05/15/2019

upcoming grant deadline: 05/15/2019

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2003 Leeway Foundation Awards $100,000 to Philadelphia-Area Women Writers

PHILADELPHIA, PA —The Leeway Foundation, one of a handful of foundations in the country to focus exclusively on individual women artists, is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2003 Emerging and Established Awards. A total of $100,000 was awarded to 12 Philadelphia-area women writers working in Fiction and Creative Nonfiction. The 2003 category included prose in the form of short stories, novels, essays, memoirs, historical narratives, auto/biography, literary journalism and experimental forms. Poetry and playwriting were not included.


Leeway's Emerging and Established Awards were open to women artists residing in Philadelphia's five-county area (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia). A total of 83 applications were received: 57 from emerging writers and 26 from established writers. The following women received awards.


The Seedling Awards

Robin Black (Montgomery County)
Rachel Cantor (Philadelphia County)
Gloria Klaiman (Montgomery County)
Molly Layton (Montgomery County)
Teresa Leo (Philadelphia County)
Ilana Stanger-Ross (Philadelphia County)

The Inspiration Awards

Yvonne Chism-Peace (Philadelphia County)
Susan Magee (Montgomery County)

The Edna Andrade Awards

Susan Abulhawa (Bucks County)
Carol Towarnicky (Philadelphia County)


The Leeway Awards for Achievement

Lorene Cary (Philadelphia County)
Sharon White (Philadelphia County)


"The rigorous jurying process truly reflected Leeway's values of caring, creativity, inclusion and respect for all," says Barbara J. Silzle, Executive Director of The Leeway Foundation. "The award recipients include writers of diverse styles, forms, traditions and points of view; and their unique voices have the power to illuminate, stir, challenge and heal us. We're honored to recognize these extraordinary women writers of the Philadelphia region. While 12 artists were chosen for awards, Leeway deeply appreciates all the women writers who applied and who bravely dedicate themselves to writing. We're grateful to have them all in our midst."


The Leeway Awards to Emerging and Established Artists were created to recognize and encourage the vital, visionary work of the Philadelphia region's community of women artists. Given annually for the past eight years in a selected visual or literary discipline, awards are based on artistic excellence. It is Leeway's intention that these awards support the continued artistic development of the recipients affording them the time and the means to write. Leeway also hopes these awards will increase their recognition and representation as writers.


The single criterion for evaluation in the Emerging and Established Awards is artistic excellence. In order to receive an award, the writing of all recipients must show a unique artistic vision and take creative risks. Additionally, work in the emerging category must demonstrate: the command of language and form expected of anyone serious about their writing; the potential for growth; and moments of inspiration and/or overall high quality. The work of established recipients must demonstrate: a superior command of language and form; lasting significance; and high quality throughout the submission. Fiction and creative nonfiction applicants were evaluated together by a three-person panel that possessed expertise in both fiction and creative nonfiction. The identity of the applicants remained anonymous until after jurying. The panelists, who made all decision by consensus, follow.


Gayle Pemberton is a professor of English and chairs the African American Studies program at Wesleyan University. She received her BA from the University of Michigan, and MA and PhD degrees in English and American Language and Literature from Harvard University. She is author of The Hottest Water in Chicago: Notes of a Native Daughter, and her work appears in several anthologies and books.

Patricia Powell is the Director of Harvard University's Creative Writing Program. She holds a BA in English Literature from Wellesley College and an MFA in Creative Writing from Brown University. She is author of Me Dying Trial, A Small Gathering of Bones and The Pagoda.

Sara Becker is a writer and a board member of The Leeway Foundation. She holds an MA in English from Stanford University and an MFA in Fiction from the Iowa Writers' Workshop.


In addition to a cash award, Fiction/Creative Nonfiction recipients have been extended an opportunity to present their work to the general public. A reading series featuring Leeway recipients will be held in local venues this fall/winter. Details to follow.


Founded in 1993, The Leeway Foundation supports individual women artists, focusing on the Greater Philadelphia region, in order to help them achieve personal and community transformation. In addition to the Emerging and Established Awards, Leeway administers a Window of Opportunity (WOO) grants program, which provides short-term, immediate assistance to individual women artists living in the Philadelphia area. For more information about the Fiction/ Creative Nonfiction Awards or other Leeway programs, call 215.545.4078 or visit leeway.org.

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Leeway Transformation Award

The Transformation Award provides unrestricted annual awards of $15,000 to women and trans* artists and cultural producers living in greater Philadelphia who create art for social change and have done so for the past five years or more, demonstrating a long-term commitment to social change work. [read more]

deadline 05/15
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03/2712:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Understanding Taxes for Artists

Leeway is partnering with CultureWorks Greater Philadelphia and Vision Driven Artists for three sessions designed to help artists understand tax season!

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03/276:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Infosession at Taller Puertorriqueño

Learn more about our grant programs and application process at this information session!

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