About Us

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The Thornton Wilder Society has the twofold purpose of supporting efforts which expand the literary legacy of Thornton Wilder and of encouraging projects which emphasize the timeless importance of literature and drama to world culture.

The Thornton Wilder Society appeals to anyone who has an interest in the life and works of Thornton Wilder. The Society is international in its scope, attracting Wilder fans, scholars, critics, educators and theatrical professionals and amateurs from all over the world. The Society, in short, is of interest to all who love Wilder, his work, and his belief in the importance of art as a sustaining influence in the world.

The Thornton Wilder Society publishes an annual newsletter containing photos, interviews, articles about Wilder’s life and work, and previously unpublished material from the rich Wilder archives. The Society also publishes the semiannual Wilder FYI, listing productions of Wilder’s plays around the country and world, as well as conferences and publications of interest to Wilder fans. The Society also sponsors a panel at the annual ALA conference, maintains a website with resources for scholars and teachers, and keeps fans abreast of news with its Facebook page. Finally, the Society biannually presents the Thornton Wilder Prize; past recipients include Russell Banks and Robert MacNeil.

The Society encourages its members to offer suggestions on its plans, bringing their ideas and knowledge to the Society as it develops. E-mail us at wildersociety@mail.montclair.edu.
 

Board of Directors and Advisory Board

The Board of Directors has eleven members: Leonard H. Becker, retired attorney, Washington D.C.; Jackson R. Bryer, Professor of English, University of Maryland (President); Park Bucker, Associate Professor of English, University of South Carolina Sumter; Michael Greenwald CPA (Treasurer); Judith Peller Hallett, Professor of Classics, University of Maryland, College Park; Terryl Hallquist, Associate Professor and Co-director of Theatre, Vanderbilt University; Lincoln Konkle, Professor of English, The College of New Jersey; Matthew Maguire, director, playwright, and professor of Theatre and director of the Theatre Program at Fordham University; Gabriel Nathan, Development Associate at Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech, and Editor, OC87 Recovery Diaries; Edyta K. Oczkowicz, Associate Professor of English, Salem College, NC; Dianna Pickens, Lecturer, the University of Naples, and Adjunct Professor, the University of Suor Orsola Benincasa in Naples, Italy; Susan D. Thomas, founding Executive Director of the Society; and Christopher Wheatley, Ordinary Professor of English, Catholic University of America.

Emeritus Directors include Nancy Bunge, Professor of American Thought and Language, Michigan State University; J. D. McClatchy, poet, editor, and founding Society President; Michael Parker, literary critic; J. Wynn Rousuck, theatre critic for WYPR, Baltimore’s NPR affiliate; and Steve Winchell, retired marketing executive.

Tappan Wilder, Thornton Wilder’s nephew and literary executor, is Honorary Chairman of the Society. An Advisory Board of distinguished figures representing the varying accomplishments of Thornton Wilder in the field of arts and letters aid and advise the Society. These Honorary Directors are Edward Albee, John Guare, A. R. Gurney, John Lahr Irene Lewis, Emily Mann, Donald Margulies, David McCullough, Joseph Roach, Tazewell Thompson, and Sam Waterston.

 
Management
Mary English, Professor of Classics, Montclair State University, is the Society’s Executive Director.

Newsletter
Edyta K. Oczkowicz is Editor of the Thornton Wilder Society Newsletter, published annually. She holds a B.A. in English from Albright College, PA, and an M.A. and a Ph.D. from Lehigh University. She teaches American literature and Caribbean women writers at Salem College, NC and has published scholarly articles in both areas. Suggestions, queries, or comments about the Newsletter may be sent to her at edyta.oczkowicz@salem.edu.

Web Developer
Alex Poulos utilizes his understanding of online development practices as the Society’s Web consultant and contributing Web Developer, and maintains both the Thornton Wilder Society website and Facebook. He is a graduate of The College of New Jersey’s Interactive Multimedia and Marketing programs. It was at TCNJ that Alex was first introduced to Wilder, as both a student of theater and drama and an extra in a production of The Skin of Our Teeth.

 
Gifts
The Thornton Wilder Society is a non-profit organization incorporated in Washington, D.C. (EIN and non-profit status number is 52-2276594.) Grossberg, Yochelson, Fox & Beyda, LLP, a D.C. law firm, serves as counsel to the Society.

Contact
The Society’s address is Montclair State University, Department of Classics, 1 Normal Ave., Montclair, NJ 07043 and phone number 973-655-5135. For more information, please contact the Thornton Wilder Society.

Residence
The Society is headquartered at Montclair State University in Montclair, NJ. Visit Montclair State University’s website.
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Permission, Licensing, Etc.
The Society does not give permission for the use of Wilder’s works nor does it have any connection with any business, legal or financial aspect of his literary legacy. As a service to our readers and members, we will, however, forward all such inquiries to the proper individuals. Please visit the Wilder Family LLC at their website for further information.