Helicon Nine


Gloria Vando Hickok, Editor and Publisher

Founder of the Midwest Center for the Literary Arts, Inc.; Helicon Nine Editions, recipient of the Kansas Governor's Arts Award; and co-founder of The Writers Place, a literary community center in Kansas City. She has served on literature panels for the National Endowment for the Arts and numerous state arts councils, and as judge for the National Book Series Awards, held residencies in schools through Young Audiences and Arts Partners. She is on the advisory boards of BkMk Press (University of Missouri-Kansas City) and The Writers Place, and has served as Arts Committee Chair for the Clearinghouse for Midcontinent Foundations, on the Board of LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens), and on the Kansas Governor's Council on the Arts. 

Vando's most recent book of poems, Shadows and Supposes (2002), won the Poetry Society of America's Alice Fay Di Castagnola Award and was named the Best Poetry Book of 2003 by the Latino Hall of Fame. Her first book of poems, Promesas: Geography of the Impossible (1993), a personal encounter with the history of colonialism and her family roots in Puerto Rico, was a Walt Whitman finalist and won the 1994 Thorpe Menn Book Award. Other awards include a River Styx International Poetry Prize (Philip Levine, judge); two Billee Murray Denny Poetry Prizes; the first Kansas Arts Commission Fellowship in poetry; Barbara Deming Memorial Fund Grant; and CCLM Editors Grant. Her poems have appeared in many magazines (including Cottonwood's "Gloria Vando Issue"), anthologies, texts, and on the recent CD release, Poetry on Record: 98 Poets Read Their Work, 1888-2006.  She is a contributing editor of The North American Review. A Puerto Rican born in New York City, she writes in Spanish and English.

Tim Barnhart, Art Director

Barnhart is an ward-winning graphic designer and serigrapher. His awards include the National Council for Marketing and Public Relations, Council for the Advancement of Secondary Education, Birmingham-Prosser Design Award. He received a B.F.A from the Kansas City Art Institute and a Master of Arts from Pittsburg State University. He is senior graphic designer at Johnson County Community College and past president of the University College and Designers Association, an international organization based in Chicago. His artwork is in numerous private art collections.  He is a specialist in American and Native American history and art.

Eve Ott, Business Manager

Eve Ott has been Executive Director of two Big Brother/Big Sister Agencies, managed an insurance agency, taught English Composition as adjunct faculty at Emporia State University and Butler County Community College, and most recently served as Braillist/Instructor for the Visually Impaired program at Flint Hills Special Education Cooperative and currently as a substitute in the Shawnee Mission, Kansas, School District..Eve is a board member of the Riverside Reading Series and a member of The Collaborators, a poetry and fiction writers' group, both in Kansas City. She also facilitates a Fiction Writing Group at The Writers' Place. Eve's fiction and poetry have appeared in glossies, both national and international, and in various literary and campus magazines.


Gloria Vando Hickok, President

Co-founder, Midwest Center for the Literary Arts, Inc.; founder of Helicon Nine Editions.

Philomene Bennett, Vice President

Her work is included in major art collections throughout the United States. She has taught at the Kansas City Art Institute and served as Art Editor of Helicon Nine.

Patricia Cleary Miller, Vice President

Holds a Ph.D. in literature from the University of Kansas. She is Chair of the English Department at Rockhurst College, has published two books of poetry and has poems in many magazines and anthologies. Editor of Rockhurst Review.

Pinky Kase, Secretary

Holds an M.A. in art history from Washington University in St. Louis and is author of UMKC monographs and Helicon Nine articles on Art History. She serves on the boards of the Nelson-Atkins Museum and UMKC Gallery of Art. President of the Midwest Center for the Literary Arts, Inc.

Marty Nichols, Treasurer

Winner of the 1997 Kansas Governor's Arts Award. She is a visual artist, civic leader, member of the board of The Writers Place and former president of the board of Starlight Association, Kansas City Philharmonic and the Kansas Arts Commission.


William Gass received the 1997 Lannan Lifetime Achievement Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism in 1985 and 1996, and the American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation.

Michael S. Harper, poet, professor of literature at Brown University (Honorable Amendments, Every Shut Eye Ain't Sleep).

Colette Inez, poet and memoirist; teaches at Columbia University.

Hilary Masters, novelist, memoirist, essayist (Home Is the Exile, Last Stands); teaches writing at the University of Pittsburgh.

Rebekah Presson Mosby, producer/editor for Rhino Records: Audie Award-winning Our Souls Have Grown Deep Like the Rivers: Black Poets Read Their Work (2000), In Their Own Voices: A Century of Recorded Poetry (1996).

Robert Phillips, author and editor of 30 books of poetry, fiction, criticism, and belles lettres (Public Landing Revisited: Stories, Personal Accounts: New & Selected Poems). He is John and Rebecca Moores Scholar and Professor of English at the University of Houston.

Miriam Schapiro, international artist and author, co-founder (with Judy Chicago) of The Woman's House in California and author of Anonymous Was a Woman.

William Jay Smith, author of more than 50 books of poetry, literary criticism, children's verse, translation, memoirs; served as Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress (1968-70) and has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters since 1975.

Daniel Stern, fiction writer (Twice Told Tales, Twice Upon a Time: Stories, An Urban Affair).

Robley Wilson, poet, novelist, and retired editor of the North American Review.