Distributed December 17, 2002
News Service Contact: Mary Jo Curtis
The Inaugural Seaver Professor
Pulitzer winner Paula Vogel named to creative writing professorship
Paula Vogel, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and professor of English, has been appointed the inaugural Adele Kellenberg Seaver ’49 Professor of Creative Writing at Brown University.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel has been appointed as the inaugural Adele Kellenberg Seaver ’49 Professor of Creative Writing at Brown University.
The new professorship was endowed by the late Adele Kellenberg Seaver, a 1949 graduate of Pembroke College in Brown University. Vogel, who won the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for drama for her play, How I Learned to Drive, joined the Brown faculty in 1985 and returned to teaching at the University this fall after an extended leave.
Vogel’s work has been performed in theaters across the country and around the world. In addition to the award-winning How I Learned to Drive (1997 Obie for playwriting, the Lortel Best Play Award, the Outer Critics’ Circle Best Off-Broadway Best Play award, and Best Play awards from the Drama Desk and the New York Drama Critics Circle), she is the author of The Baltimore Waltz (winner of the 1992 Obie for best play), The Mineola Twins, Meg, Desdemona, Baby Makes Seven and The Oldest Profession, among others. Her latest play, The Long Christmas Ride Home, will be produced by Trinity Repertory Company in Providence in May 2003.
In addition to Brown, Vogel has taught at Cornell University, Trinity Conservatory and the Writer’s Voice of New York. She received a Bachelor of Arts in theater from Catholic University in 1974, followed by graduate work in theater arts at Cornell University.
Adele Kellenberg Seaver ’49
Born in Brookline, Mass., Adele Kellenberg Seaver began assisting her family in running its business, Harvard-Tefford Clothiers, following her father’s death when she was just 16. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree after studying English at Brown, then worked in retail sales and insurance for several years. She married Nelson H. Seaver Jr. in 1957 and later resumed her education, earning a masters degree in education from Suffolk University in 1969. She was an elementary school teacher in the Weymouth public schools for many years.
Seaver was an active member of the Brown Alumni Association, and she and her husband frequently attended reunions and other alumni activities. “That time was very special to them,” said Catherine Englemann, a close friend and co-executor of the Seaver estate. Seaver, who died April 30, 2000, was a resident of Cataumet, Mass.
The Corporation of Brown University formally established the the Adele Kellenberg Seaver ’49 Professorship in Creative Writing at its Commencement Weekend meeting May 25, 2002.