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UM News
March 18, 2013


The American Academy of Arts and Letters awarded Joanna Klink, associate professor of English and creative writing at the University of Montana, the $7,500 Arts and Letters Award in Literature to honor her career and poetry publications. 

Recognition by the American Academy of Arts and Letters is considered one of the highest formal acknowledgments of artistic merit in the U.S.

“I was pretty floored,” Klink said. “I’m not on the radar too much, so it’s really nice to be recognized like this.”

She has received awards and fellowships from the Rona Jaffe Foundation, Jeannette Haien Ballard and Civitella Ranieri. Klink is the author of three books of poetry: “They Are Sleeping,” “Circadian” and “Raptus.” Her poems have appeared in many anthologies, most recently “The Penguin Anthology of Twentieth Century American Poetry.” 

Klink is a poetry professor at UM and currently on sabbatical.  She is finishing a book about Paul Celan, called “Strangeness,” and hopes to complete her fourth book of poems as well, which is slated for publication in April 2015.

The American Academy of Arts and Letters is an honor society of 250 lifelong members. The membership is made up of elected architects, composers, artists and writers. Each year the Academy recognizes more than 50 composers, artists, architects and writers for exceptional work with cash awards ranging from $5,000 to $100,000. Academy members nominate the award candidates, and committees comprised of randomly selected members from the academy’s roster choose the recipients.

For more information call Klink at 406-493-1751 or email or call Virginia Dajani, executive director of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, at 212-368-5900 or email





Contact: Joanna Klink, associate professor, UM Department of English, 406-493-1751,; Virginia Dajani, executive director, American Academy of Arts and Letters, 212-368-5900,