A passion for literary outreach
Alison Meyers in the new executive director of Writers & Books
Writers & Books
74 University Ave.
Rochester’s premier writing center, Writers & Books (WAB), recently welcomed Alison Meyers as its executive director. Meyers, a seasoned writer and literary leader, moved to Rochester with her husband, William Sledge, from Clinton, Connecticut, in May.
“She has great energy, great literary sense, and she has a lot of enthusiasm,” says Writers & Books board of directors member Christine Eichelberger. Fellow board member Beverly Gold echoed Eichelberger’s sentiment and also thinks that Meyers’ enthusiasm makes her a great person to take over from founder and interim director Joe Flaherty.
"She is very passionate, and that really came through", remarks Gold. And it's exciting to have a woman at the helm.
This diversification can only be done, she believes, by reaching out to the people WAB serves and asking them what they want from a literary center. She emphasizes that the evaluative process is “as important as the actual delivery of the programing. It’s difficult for organizations to enact because we’re so focused on activity, and we’re so passionate about the work. But this really is the work.”
Eichelberger is happy to know that Meyers shares this value with the board and staff at WAB. “Her view that it’s important to be relevant to all different types of communities is one of our key goals,” she adds.
Meyers is settling right into her new home in downtown Rochester and is already experiencing the warmth and friendliness of Flower City residents. “We’ve had so many wonderful, welcoming emails from Writers & Books followers and others in the community. People in the literary arts from surrounding areas and the city speak very enthusiastically about everything that goes on in Rochester. We’re excited!”
Meyers is also a Pushcart-nominated poet and fiction writer and is currently tackling a creative nonfiction piece about “a psychological journey marked by geographic displacement.” She also enjoys playing tennis and walking. Meyers and Sledge have a grown daughter who teaches at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania as well as two grandchildren.
Christine Green is a freelance writer, teaching artist, and writing coach in Rochester. Visit christinejgreen.com.