Kao Kalia Yang
Kao Kalia Yang is the prize-winning Hmong-American author of the memoirs The Latehomecomer, The Song Poet, and Somewhere in the Unknown World. Yang is also the author of the children’s books A Map into the World, The Shared Room, The Most Beautiful Thing, and Yang Warriors. Her work has been recognized by the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Book Critics Circle Award and many others. She lives in Minnesota with her family, and teaches and speaks across the nation.
Liv Marit Haakenstad, AG®
Liv Marit Haakenstad, AG® is a well-known author, speaker, and genealogist who has more than forty years of experience with classic genealogy, heir research, and forensic genealogy. A resident of Hamar, Norway, she offers lectures, workshops, seminars, and tours that bring descendants to their family homesteads in Norway. Haakenstad has written more than one hundred articles on Norwegian emigration and genealogy technology, and ten books on Norwegian genealogy.
Margi Preus is the author of the Newbery Honor book Heart of a Samurai and other books for young readers, including the Minnesota Book Award–winning West of the Moon and The Clue in the Trees, which won a Midwest Booksellers Choice Award. The creator of the Enchantment Lake mystery series, Margi enjoys traveling, speaking, and visiting schools all over the world. Now mostly at home in Duluth, she likes to ski, hike, kayak, or sit quietly with a book in her lap.
Angela Trudell Vasquez
Angela (Angie) Trudell Vasquez is the current city of Madison Poet Laureate (2020-2024) and the first Latina to hold the position. Angie received her MFA in poetry from the Institute of American Indian Arts in 2017. Recently, her poems have appeared in The Slow Down, Yellow Medicine Review, Poem-a-Day, About Place Journal and in several anthologies. In 2018 she was a finalist for the New Women’s Voices series and her collection, In Light, Always Light, was published by Finishing Line Press in May 2019. Finishing Line Press also published her fourth collection of poetry, My People Redux, in January 2022. In the summer of 2021 she became a Macondo Fellow or a Macondista. angietrudellvasquez.com
Franciszka Voeltz writes poems to go on a portable typewriter for magnificent strangers, and has been facilitating community writing events and workshops for 20 years.
Voeltz’s chapbook 8 August is available from Vegetarian Alcoholic Press, and their work has appeared in journals including Dark Mountain, Analecta Literary Journal, and Adrienne. Voeltz is the recipient of multiple poetry fellowships including those granted by the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, Santa Fe Art Institute, and Art Farm. Voeltz earned an MFA in Writing from the University of California, San Diego
Níkki Wallschlaeger is the author of 3 books of poetry and numerous chapbooks. Her recent book is Waterbaby (Copper Canyon Press, 2021). She recently held a Visiting Associate Professorship in Poetry at the Iowa Writer’s Workshop from 2021/2022 academic school year. Her next book of poetry, Hold Your Own is forthcoming in 2024 also from Copper Canyon Press. She lives in the Driftless.
J Ryan Stradal
J Ryan Stradal is from a small town in southeastern Minnesota, used to produce TV shows (Deadliest Catch, Storage Wars, Ice Road Truckers) and because of his mom’s influence, he’s been a writer his whole life. His debut novel, Kitchens of the Great Midwest, was a New York Times bestseller, and his follow-up, The Lager Queen of Minnesota, was a national bestseller.
Dr. Pao Lor
Pao Lor, author of Modern Jungles, is Wood Baer Professor of Education at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Prior to joining UW-Green Bay in 2005, Pao was a middle and high school administrator and teacher, high school and college soccer head coach, and university academic advisor. He resides in Kimberly, Wisconsin and enjoys time with his family and friends, traveling, biking, motorcycling, and playing soccer.