The Mark Gelfand Service Award for Educational Outreach
2014 Gelfand Award Recipient
Thomas Stockham Baker Professor, Department of English
Jim Daniels is the Thomas Stockham Professor of English at Carnegie Mellon University, where he has been teaching since 1981. At Carnegie Mellon, he has received the Ryan Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Elliott Dunlap Smith Award for Teaching and Educational Service, and a Faculty Service Award from the Alumni Association. For 15 years, he directed the Creative Writing Program, and for seven years, he has been the English Department director of Undergraduate Studies. He is the founder and director of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day Writing Awards, which just celebrated its 15th anniversary, and in 2001, he founded a mentoring program involving students in the creative writing program at Carnegie Mellon and students at the Pittsburgh CAPA 6-12, the creative and performing arts magnet school.
Daniels' fourteenth book of poems Birth Marks, was published in 2013 and was selected as a Michigan Notable Book. His fifth book of short fiction, Eight Mile High, will be published in fall 2014. He has also written the screenplays for three films, most recently, Mr. Pleasant, in 2011, which he also produced. He has collaborated with Design Department Professor, Charlee Brodsky, on two books combining his poems with her photographs. Their book, Street, won the Tillie Olsen Prize. Other writing awards include the Brittingham Prize for Poetry, the Blue Lynx Poetry Prize, two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and two from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. In addition, he has edited or coedited four anthologies, including Letters to America: Contemporary American Poetry on Race. A native of Detroit, Daniels is a graduate of Alma College and Bowling Green State University.