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Selection Process

For the inaugural 2010 Chicago Literary Hall of Fame, we will be honoring with induction only six writers who are no longer with us. In coming years, we expect to open up the Hall of Fame to living writers as well. But with this first induction class, we want to recognize and celebrate those whose words paved the literary road for us today and for future generations.

A 13-member committee distinguished for their work in the Chicago literary committee chose the 2010 Hall of Fame nominees. The panel includes leaders in literary publishing, editing, broadcasting, criticism, writing, and whose specialties range from poetry to drama to short fiction to the novel. Each member was asked to assemble a ballot with six nominees, along with rationale for inclusion. There were, then, 78 total, including 27 unique, nominations.

These 27 nominees are now under consideration by a separate panel consisting of five of our best and brightest writers and scholars. They will debate the merits of all nominees and eventually vote upon the six most deserving inductees.

Selection to the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame is expected to be an evolving process with criteria that will develop and change with time. In this, the first year, we gave it a broad scope — opening up nominations to those writers who best represent Chicago’s rich and proud literary heritage.

The hope is that, through the rigorous nominating and selecting process, the criteria will arise organically. In the end, it’s important that the literary community, which includes all champions and readers of the art, give voice to what constitutes a Chicago Literary Hall of Fame inductee.

In the future, the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame will add categories to honor deserving literary writers, popular writers, editors and more. But for now, it is in the hands of the five esteemed selectors to weight the criteria and elect six writers to comprise the initial induction class, and set the highest standards for the people who will ultimately represent the Hall of Fame.

Past Nominators

Brenda Aghahowa (2017)

Randy Albers (2010)

Arthur Amaker (2019)

Peter Anderson (2018)

Ian Belknap (2015)

Charles Blackstone (2014)

John Blades (2019)

Bob Boone (2016)

Barrie Jean Borich (2017)

Jotham Burrello (2015)

Michael Burke (2011)

Gail Bush (2012)

Michael Caplan (2016)

Stephen Casari (2012)

George Castle (2017)

Kelli Christiansen (2014)

Carlos Cumpián (2015)

Amy Danzer (2017)

Albert DeGenova (2016)

Jeff Deutsch (2018)

Aaron Todd Douglas (2014)

Joseph Drogos (2012)

Robert Duffer (2010)

Donald G. Evans (2014)

Gina Frangello (2011)

J.C. Gabel (2012)

James Finn Garner (2012)

Regie O’Hare Gibson (2012)

Juana Goergen (2017)

Richard Guzman (2010)

Marie Hayes (2010)

Andrew Huff (2018)

Naomi Huffman (2015)

Jac Jemc (2017)

Rick Kaempfer (2013)

Garrett Kiely (2010)

Florice Whyte Kovan (2017)

Quraysh Ali Lansana (2011)

Victoria Lautman (2010)

Cole Lavalais (2018)

Aimee Levitt (2018)

Richard Lindberg (2013)

Alba Machado (2014)

Alice Maggio (2010)

Eric May (2016)

Patricia Ann McNair (2019)

Robin Metz (2014)

Shahari Moore (2015)

Adam Morgan (2017)

Ian Morris (2014)

Tom Mullaney (2017)

Natalia Nebel (2014)

Penelope Niven (2013)

Julie Parson-Nesbitt (2015)

Barry Pearce (2019)

Andrew Peart (2016)

Jason Pettus (2015)

Cate Plys (2019)

Mike Puican (2019)

Michael Raleigh (2016)

Stacy Ratner (2016)

George Rawlinson (2010)

Richard Reeder (2013)

Christine Rice (2018)

John Rich (2013)

Randy Richardson (2010)

Luis J. Rodriguez (2014)

Kathleen Rooney (2013)

Tal Rosenberg (2018)

Carlo Rotella (2011)

Jacob Saenz (2014)

Dmitry Samarov (2013)

Fred Sasaki (2019)

George Saunders (2011)

R. Craig Sautter (2015)

Sandra Seaton (2013)

Donna Seaman (2010)

Abigail Sheaffer (2015)

Don Share (2011)

Tim Spears (2011)

Jason Smith (2015)

Patricia Smith (2012)

Christine Sneed (2012)

Megan Stielstra (2014)

Rachel Swearingen (2019)

Suzie Takacs (2012)

Ben Tanzer (2018)

Jackie Taylor (2010)

Nell Taylor (2011)

Steven Tracy (2012)

Angela Narcisco Torres (2016)

Russ Tutterow (2010)

Emily Victorson (2013)

Ellen Placey Wadey (2013)

Lisa Wagner (2016)

Rachel Weaver (2015)

Judith West (2010)

Nonna Working (2017)

Marc Zimmerman (2016)

Cheryl Ziegler (2018)

Past Selectors

Arthur Amaker (2017)

Nina Barett (2018)

Rosellen Brown (2010)

Tina Boyer Brown (2019)

Don DeGrazia (2017)

Gioia Diliberto (2013)

Craig Davis (2018)

Madhu Dubey (2015)

Paul Durica (2014)

Stuart Dybek (2010)

Kelly Norman Ellis (2014)

Richard Guzman (2019)

Ronne Hartfield (2013)

Cristina Henriquez (2011)

Brian Hieggelke (2013)

Angela Jackson (2011)

Parneshia Jones (2012)

Alex Kotlowitcz (2011)

Lisa Yun Lee (2015)

Haki Madhubuti (2010)

Margot McMahon (2015)

Joe Meno (2013)

Michelle Moore (2019)

Daniel Nearing (2012)

Toni Nealie (2016)

Achy Obejas (2010)

Bayo Ojikutu (2011)

Liesl Olson (2015)

Bill Ott (2019)

Dominic Pacyga (2012)

Elise Paschen (2016)

Useni Eugene Perkins (2014)

Ed Roberson (2016)

Kathleen Rooney (2019)

June Sawyers (2018)

Elizabeth Metzger Sampson (2018)

Bill Savage (2010)

Salli Berg Seeley (2017)

Sharon Solwitz (2017)

Elizabeth Taylor (2016)

Christian TeBordo (2014)

Annie Tully (2014)

Luis Alberto Urrea (2012)

Kenneth Warren (2013)

Bill Young (2015)

Stephen Young (2016)

Dennis Zachek (2011)

Mary Zimmerman (2012)

The Chicago Literary Hall of Fame’s mission is to honor and preserve Chicago’s great literary heritage.
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