The acclaimed Middlebury-based writer Julia Alvarez is among the
five Vermonters chosen this year to be inducted as Fellows of the
Vermont Academy of the Arts and Sciences (VAAS).
The honor is given every year to a select few Vermonters who
have made a significant contribution to their fields, said VAAS
President Connell Gallagher. Other recipients of the honor this
year are: writer Chris Bohjalian, artist Sabra Field, and
scientists Lauren Howard and A. Paul Krapcho. "The Fellows were
selected for their exemplary reputations and the substantial impact
they have made on the life and conditions in Vermont," Gallagher
Dominican-American Alvarez gained international fame in 1991
with her novel How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents followed a
few years later by In the Time of Butterflies, a novel chosen by
the National Endowment for the Humanities to help revitalize
literary reading in America. Since then, her autobiographical
essays, poetry, novels and children's books have made her one of
the most significant Latina writers in America today.
Sabra Field is a contemporary printmaker who has published
hand-pulled, wood block prints from her Vermont Studio since 1969.
Her richly-colored prints, known for distilling the essence of
Vermont, have been featured in numerous books, as magazine covers
and major galleries.
Chris Bohjalian has published 16 novels, many of them New York
Times bestsellers, including The Light in Ruins (2013) and
Skeleton's Feast (2008). His book, Midwives (1997), based in
rural Vermont was selected by Oprah Winfrey for her Book Club and
subsequently became number one on the New York Times bestseller
The VAAS has also chosen Lauren Howard as one of its scientific
Fellows. Dr. Howard is an award-winning biology professor at
Norwich University and an expert on woody plants. He served as
chair of his department for 15 years and he established an
important herbarium at Norwich for the study of the plant
Dr. A. Paul Krapcho, emeritus professor of chemistry from UVM
was named for his research in cancer treatment. His work has led to
safer chemicals in the treatment of cancers. He developed the
widely used synthetic procedure known as the Krapcho
dealkoxycarbonylation. Dr. Krapcho has also developed a drug
currently under review by the FDA for the treatment of
The Vermont Academy of Arts and Sciences is an organization that
works to foster intensive participation in the arts, humanities and
sciences within the state. Besides recognizing outstanding Fellows,
it organizes intercollegiate student symposia and conferences with
a Vermont focus.
VAAS also provides grants and cash awards to high schools to
support science and historical research projects.
Past Fellows include: Bill McKibben, George D. Aiken, Sister
Elizabeth Candon, Edward J. Feidner, Bernd Heinrich, Ralph Nading
Hill, Galway Kinnell, Jamie Laredo, Richard Lewontin, Margaret
MacArthur, Larry McCrorey, Wolfgang Meider, Tom Slayton, Claire Van
Vliet, Hub Vogelmann and Gwyneth Walker.