Award-Winning Poet Is Named Academy Fellow

Award-winning Wisconsin poet and Council for Wisconsin Writers board member Robin Chapman heads the list of The Wisconsin Academy of Sciences Arts & Letters’ 2014 Fellows. The other six Fellows are museum director Kathy Kelsey Foley, producer and director David Frank, folklorist James P. Leary, limnologist John J. Magnuson, materials engineer Pradeep Rohatgi, and conservation biologist Stanley A. Temple.  The Fellows will be congratulated and introduced to past Fellows, members of the academy and the general public at an awards ceremony on April 27, 2014, from 1:00–3:30 pm at Overture Center for the Arts in Madison. Tickets for the event go on sale March 15, and will be available online or by calling the Wisconsin Academy at 608-263-1692. Here’s the academy’s news release:

February 7, 2014
Contact: Jason A. Smith, communications director
Wisconsin Academy Announces 2014 Fellows
MADISON—The Wisconsin Academy today announced its 2014 Fellows: poet Robin Chapman, museum director Kathy Kelsey Foley, producer and director David Frank, folklorist James P. Leary, limnologist John J. Magnuson, materials engineer Pradeep Rohatgi, and conservation biologist Stanley A. Temple. Complete biographies and images of the Wisconsin Academy’s 2014 Fellows can be found below or online at
Established in 1981, the Fellows program represents the highest level of recognition conferred by the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters. Drawn from a pool of statewide nominees, Fellows are elected for their extraordinary levels of accomplishment in their fields as well as a lifelong commitment to intellectual discourse and public service.
“The Academy’s Fellows program honors Wisconsin’s most excelling, creative and hard-working citizens, people who have enriched our lives through their scholarship and imagination. By recognizing their contributions to Wisconsin and the world beyond, we hope to call attention to the benefits that flow from the brilliant and dedicated citizens of our state and to inspire others to follow in their footsteps,” says Millard Susman, President of the Wisconsin Academy Council.
Other Wisconsin Academy Fellows, Wisconsin Academy members, and the general public are invited to meet and congratulate the 2014 Fellows at an awards ceremony on April 27, 2014, from 1:00–3:30 pm at Overture Center for the Arts in Madison. Ticket for the 2014 Fellows Awards Ceremony go on sale March 15, and will be available online or by calling the Wisconsin Academy at 608-263-1692.
Wisconsin Academy Fellows are distinguished individuals from a wide range of disciplines that help the Wisconsin Academy shape its programs and projects. To be considered, one must have made significant contributions to the well-being of the state of Wisconsin and be highly esteemed for qualities of judgment, perceptiveness, and breadth of knowledge. Those elected will also have a career marked by an unusually high order of discovery; technological accomplishments; creative productivity in literature, poetry, or the fine or practical arts; historical analysis; legal or judicial interpretation; philosophical thinking; or public service.
The Wisconsin Academy annually seeks statewide nominations for fellowship consideration from Academy members, existing Fellows, and the general public. The Council, the Wisconsin Academy’s governing body, awards Fellows distinctions based on the recommendation of a selection committee broadly representative of the sciences, arts, and letters. The total number of Fellows is limited to 100. Nominations for the 2015 class of Wisconsin Academy Fellows will open in late summer 2014.
About the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters
The independent, nonprofit Wisconsin Academy brings people together at the intersection of the sciences, arts, and letters to inspire discovery, illuminate creative work, and foster civil dialogue on important issues. We’re a key resource for informed and engaged citizens who appreciate the value of discovery and learning. Our goal is to foster a rich and lively creative culture that enhances our quality of life so that Wisconsin is economically, socially, and environmentally resilient. Our public programs include the James Watrous Gallery in Overture Center for the Arts, a gallery by and for Wisconsin artists; Wisconsin People & Ideas, our quarterly magazine about Wisconsin thought and culture; Academy Evening Talks, our statewide series of public lectures; and Wisconsin Initiatives, a program to explore major issues and solutions—currently including Waters of Wisconsin and Wisconsin’s Climate and Energy Future. For more information on Wisconsin Academy programs and events, or to learn how you can join our mission, visit


Robin Chapman
From the time poet Robin Chapman was eight she has written poetry, returning to it in 1980 in Wisconsin with the commitment to meet with her writing groups weekly, including in her poems topics of daily life, nature, child language, and science. Chapman is UW-Madison professor emerita of Communicative Disorders and a former principal investigator at the Waisman Center, where she studied language learning in individuals with Down syndrome, work for which she received the 2006 Career Research Scientist award from the Academy on Mental Retardation.
►Her poems have appeared widely in journals and online, including The American Scholar, Beloit Poetry Journal, The Christian Science Monitor, Hudson Review, OnEarth, Poetry, and Wilderness. Recipient of three grants from the Wisconsin Arts Board, including a 2007 Literary Arts Fellowship, she is author of five chapbooks and nine books of poetry, including The Only Everglades in the WorldThe Way In and Images of a Complex World: The Art and Poetry of Chaos (with UW physicist J. C. Sprott’s fractals and explanations), both winners of the Posner Poetry Award from the Council for Wisconsin Writers. The Dreamer Who Counted the Dead received a Wisconsin Library Association award for outstanding achievement in poetry and Abundance received the Cider Press Review Editors’ Book Award.
►Her most recent books from Tebot Bach, the eelgrass meadow and One Hundred White Pelicans, just out, focus on the natural landscape and climate change. Dappled Things, her most recent chapbook portfolio, is a collaboration pairing 23 of her poems with Peter Miller’s photogravures of Asia. Her work received Appalachia’s 2010 Poetry Prize. She has co-edited two poetry anthologies, On Retirement: 75 Poems with the late Judith Strasser; and Love Over 60: An Anthology of Women’s Poems with Jeri McCormick. She teaches poetry workshops at The Clearing and Bjorklunden in Door County.
Kathy Kelsey Foley
Kathy Kelsey Foley has the distinction of having twice served as director of Wausau’s Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, her tenures separated by seven years. She returned to the Woodson in March 1998 and considers the time away from Wausau and the Museum “an extended sabbatical and important learning period.”
►Foley received her undergraduate degree in art history from Vassar College and a master’s degree, also in art history, from The Johns Hopkins University. Her museum training and experience include stints at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC; The Dayton Art Institute; Northwestern University’s Block Museum of Art, where she was the founding director; and The Gap Inc., where she served as manager of corporate internal communication.
►Foley’s community and professional involvement includes prior service on the Boards of United Way, Wausau’s Performing Arts Foundation, and the Wausau–Central Wisconsin Convention & Visitors Bureau. She currently serves on the Boards of Aspirus Wausau Hospital and Aspirus Clinics Inc., and chairs the Aspirus Wausau Hospital Accountability Committee and the Aspirus Inc. Quality Committee. Her involvement in the broader museum field includes a lengthy tenure on the Board of the Association of Midwest Museums, and service as an Institute of Museum and Library Services grant review panelist, American Alliance of Museums accreditation site visitor, and Smithsonian–Metropolitan Life grant reviewer.
►Foley has been an advocate for the arts at both the federal and state levels, and was recognized by the American Alliance of Museums as a 2013 Star Advocate. She is passionate about her work at the Woodson Art Museum, and, like the museum, strives to “enhance lives through art” in the North Central Wisconsin community.
David Frank
David Frank (and family) moved to Wisconsin when he was appointed Artistic Director of the American Players Theatre in the summer of 1991. First as the artistic leader, and eventually as both artistic and managing leader, Frank helped guide this most surprising company through more than two decades of remarkable growth and success.
►Since 1992, APT’s audience has doubled, its annual operating budget has tripled, an oppressive debt has been eliminated, and the company has established a far-reaching reputation for its distinctive approach to classical drama, the works of Shakespeare in particular. In December, 2011, increasing attention from the national press culminated in the Wall Street Journal’s senior theater critic, Terry Teachout, designating APT as his “company of the year” and Frank’s production of The Cure at Troy (Seamus Heaney’s adaptation of Sophocles’ Philoctetes) “the best show of any kind” that he had seen that year.
►Raised and trained in England (Rose Bruford College of Speech and Drama), Frank has spent most of his fifty-year career in the theater heading professional companies, including stints as Producing Director of the Repertory Theater of Saint Louis and Artistic Director of the Studio Arena Theater in Buffalo, NY. He has directed and produced more productions than he cares to remember and has served extensively as a consultant, lecturer, and workshop leader for arts councils, foundations, theater companies, and university theater departments throughout the United States. Frank is a past chairman of the theater panels of the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Arts Council.
James P. Leary
James P. Leary is the Birgit Baldwin Professor of Scandinavian Studies, a professor in the Department of Comparative Literature and Folklore Studies, and a co-founder of the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures at UW–Madison. Recipient of the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Public Humanities Scholarship, Leary is a fellow of the American Folklore Society and co-editor of Journal of American Folklore.
►Born in Rice Lake, Wisconsin in 1950, Leary grew up fascinated by the dialects, stories, music, and customs of his culturally diverse neighbors; and through part-time work on farms, logging, in a warehouse, a foundry, and as a “printer’s devil,” he learned to appreciate the school of hard knocks. Leary has done research since the 1970s on the cultural traditions of workers, Native peoples, European Americans, and new immigrants in the Upper Midwest, contributing to numerous folk ife festivals, museum exhibits, films, public radio programs, documentary sound recordings, and accessible archival collections.
►His books include: Yodeling in Dairyland: A History of Swiss Music in WisconsinWisconsin Folklore;So Ole Says to Lena: Folk Humor of the Upper MidwestDown Home Dairyland (with Richard March);Polkabilly: How the Goose Island Ramblers Redefined American Folk Music; and a new edition of Richard Dorson’s Bloodstoppers and Bearwalkers: Folk Traditions of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. His current projects are an ethnography of Ironworkers (with Bucky Halker) and a 5 CD/DVD/book production, Folksongs of Another America: Field Recordings from the Upper Midwest, 1937–1946, forthcoming from UW Press.
John J. Magnuson
John J. Magnuson is Professor Emeritus of Zoology and Limnology at the Center for Limnology, UW–Madison. He was the first director of the Center for Limnology (1982-2000), joined the faculty in 1968, taught both Limnology and Ecology of Fishes for over thirty years, was thesis advisor for 38 PhD and 67 MS students, and published six books and more than 350 papers to date.
►Magnuson has a BS and MS from the University of Minnesota–St. Paul and a PhD from the University of British Columbia, Canada. He was president of the American Fisheries Society (1981) and a founding member of its Wisconsin Chapter, directed the Ecology Program (1976) at the National Science Foundation, and chaired National Academy Committees addressing marine fisheries and biodiversity. Magnuson was a first co-chair of the “Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts” from 2007–2011, and played a lead role for inland waters in the 1995 and 2001 assessments by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He co-chaired Waters of Wisconsin (Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts, and Letters, 2001–2004) and is currently active in WOW 2.
►His latest book (Long-Term Dynamics of Lakes in the Landscape, Magnuson, Kratz, & Benson 2006) covers the 1982 to 2004 results of long-term ecological research on Wisconsin lakes funded by the National Science Foundation. Recently, Magnuson has been active in Friends of the Lakeshore Nature Preserve and The Nature Conservancy.
►Awards include the 2000 Hilldale Award in Biological Sciences (UW–Madison) and the 2000 Award of Excellence (American Fisheries Society). His current interests include long-term regional ecology, climate change & variability, fish & fisheries ecology, outreach, photography, and family history.
Pradeep Rohatgi
Pradeep Rohatgi received his undergraduate degree from IIT-BHU and his Doctorate in science from MIT in 1964. He was a professor at the Indian Institute of Science and Indian Institute of Technology, and also served as the Founder and Chief Executive of two National Laboratories in India. Rohatgi currently serves as a Wisconsin and University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Distinguished Professor, and director of the Center for Composite Materials and the Center for Advanced Materials Manufacturing at UWM. Rohatgi has coauthored twelve books, four hundred scientific papers and has eighteen U.S. Patents. His initial research on cast metal composites has been listed as a major landmark in the 11,000-year history of metal casting, and the Rohatgi Honorary Symposium was held to honor his work in 2006.
►Recently he has extended his work to make matrix nano composites, syntactic foams, self lubricating and self-healing metal matrix composite castings. Rohatgi has received numerous awards for excellence in research from all over the world. He is a fellow of the Minerals, Metals, and Materials Society; ASM International; Institute of Metals and Materials (London); American Association for the Advancement of Sciences; Third World Academy of Science (Italy); American Society of Mechanical Engineers; Society of Automotive Engineers, and Society of Manufacturing Engineers. He was given the Engineer of the Year Award from Engineers and Scientists of Milwaukee in 2011 for his contributions to Milwaukee and the State of Wisconsin.
►The metal matrix composites developed by him have been manufactured and used in many industrial applications including brake rotors, brake calipers, engine pulleys, cylinder liners and bearings. As a result of his research, the U.S., especially Wisconsin, has become a world leader in research, development, and manufacture of metal matrix composite prototypes and components. He has trained a large number of students and doctoral fellows, many of whom are in leadership positions in Wisconsin industries, and are helping revive the metal processing industry in Wisconsin.
Stanley A. Temple
Stanley A. Temple is the Beers-Bascom Professor Emeritus in Conservation in the Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology and former Chairman of the Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development Program in the Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at UW–Madison. For 32 years he held the academic position once occupied by Aldo Leopold, and during that time he won every teaching award for which he was eligible. Temple has a PhD in ecology from Cornell University where he studied at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. He and his students have helped save many of the world’s endangered species and the habitats on which they depend. He is currently a Senior Fellow with the Aldo Leopold Foundation where he continues to work on conservation issues at scales from local to global.
►Temple received major conservation awards from the Society for Conservation Biology, The Wildlife Society, and the Wisconsin Society for Ornithology, and among other recognitions of his achievements, he is a Fellow of the American Ornithologists’ Union, the Explorer’s Club, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Temple has been President of the Society for Conservation Biology and Chairman of the Board of The Nature Conservancy in Wisconsin. He has authored over three hundred publications on ecology and conservation.
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