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Contact: Christina Chapple
Date: 4/20/05
 
Jack BedellClick on image for publication quality photo 

SOUTHEASTERN POET JACK BEDELL TO RECEIVE LEH HUMANITIES AWARD 
       HAMMOND -- Poet Jack Bedell, an associate professor of English at Southeastern Louisiana University, is among the state humanities award winners who will be honored at the Governor’s Mansion in Baton Rouge May 10.
       The annual humanities awards ceremony and reception, sponsored by the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, honors Louisianians who have made outstanding contributions to the study and understanding of the humanities.
       Bedell is one of five recipients of the LEH’s Special Humanities Award. Since 1999, Bedell, who teaches literature and creative writing at Southeastern and is an award-winning poet, has served as the scholar and discussion leader of 15 LEH-funded “Prime Time Family Reading Time” programs at libraries, schools and churches in southeast Louisiana. 
       In supporting Bedell’s nomination for the award, Tammy Bourg, dean of Southeastern’s College of Arts and Sciences, described him as one of the university’s “stars.” The dean said Bedell, who was the recipient of Southeastern’s prestigious President’s Award for Excellence in Artistic Activity in 1997, is “an accomplished poet and editor…who subtly captures universal complexities of everyday life in a unique landscape.” 
       Bedell is also editor of “Louisiana Literature,” Southeastern’s award-winning literary journal. Puddinghouse Press released his most recent collection, “Greatest Hits,” in 2004. His new poems appeared in Yale University’s anthology “Cauduceus 2” in 2003, and his new collection, “Come Rain, Come Shine,” is slated for release in early 2006 from the Texas A&M Press Consortium. 
       Bedell, a Houma native, has previously published three poetry chapbooks, including “What Passes for Love,” which won the 2000 Texas Review Poetry Chapbook Prize. Bedell won the1997 Texas Review Poetry Prize for “At the Bonehouse,” a collection of approximately 30 poems set in his native Acadiana. He has received a number of other awards, including the Devil's Millhopper Chapbook Award for his first poetry collection, “Sleeping with the Net Maker”; the Felix Christopher McKean Award for Poetry at the University of Arkansas in 1989; and honorable mention in the Deep South Writers Conference Contests, 1989, and the Academy of American Poets Competition in 1992. His poems have been published in literary journals such as “Kansas Quarterly” and “Aethlon” and “Something in Common: An Anthology of Louisiana Poets.” 
       A member of the Southeastern faculty since 1992, Bedell earned bachelor's and master's degrees in English from Northwestern State University and a master’s degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. He previously taught at both his alma mater and at the University of Missouri at Rolla.