Educated at University of North Texas, Tony Burnett (Board Treasurer) is Managing Editor at Kallisto Gaia Press, home of The Ocotillo Review and The Texas Poetry Calendar. An award winning poet, journalist, activist and songwriter, his poetry and short fiction have been published in literary magazines and anthologies including, Sixfold, Connotation Press, Short Story America, Frontier Tales, Texas Poetry Calendar, Poetry @ Round Top anthology, Tidal Basin Review, Di-verse-city and Toucan Literary Magazine. He is the former Editor in Chief of Scribe, the on-line blog with over 6000 subscribers and serves as Board President of the Writers’ League of Texas. He makes his home in rural central Texas near Temple with his trophy wife, Robin. His hobbies include poking wasp nests with short sticks and wandering aimlessly about.
Gogi Hale (Board President) is a multi-genre writer and host of a weekly critique group. She is a member of the Writers’ League of Texas (WLT), Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), and a 2016 Finalist for the SCBWI Cynthia Leitich-Smith Mentoring Award. She is active in the writing community, as a volunteer for the WLT and SCBWI. She continues her education through numerous courses, workshops and the WLT’s Summer Writers’ Retreat at Sul Ross University in Alpine TX. She holds a BA in Psychology and an MA in Experimental Psychology.
Christy Esmahan (Board Secretary) began her career as a scientist, earning her BA in Microbiology at Miami University and her doctoral degree in Molecular Biology from the Universidad de Leon, Spain. After a twelve-year stint in Spain and a few years in Germany, she moved back to the U.S. and used her MA in Education (Universidad de Pais Vasco, Spain) to work as an educator and administrator at both the high school and university level. Now she is an award-winning author and has published seven books in English and one in Spanish. She also served on the board of Amigos de Las Americas for three years. Her hobbies include birding, reading, travelling and eventually figuring out what she will do when she grows up.
As a board member of Kallisto Gaia Press, her goal is to work with the other board members to create a vibrant, high quality literary magazine by first developing a mission statement and then enacting a set of bylaws.
VAN G. GARRETT
Van G. Garrett is the winner of the 2017 Best Book of African American Poetry by the Texas Association of Authors. A watch aficionado, Van is the author of Songs in Blue Negritude (poetry), ZURI: Selected Love Songs (chapbook), The Iron Legs in the Trees (fiction), and 49: Wings & Prayers (chapbook). Additionally, Van’s poetry has been widely-published in journals and anthologies based in the United States, Africa, Switzerland, Turkey, London, and elsewhere.
Van earned his MAIS from the University of Houston-Victoria and his B.A. from Houston Baptist University. He is the first student to receive a graduate certificate in African American Studies from the University of Houston. His updates and appearances can be found at: www.vanggarrettpoet.com.
Janet Lande (Board VP of Communications) has 25 years of corporate communications experience, focused on marketing communications, publications management and public relations. After leaving the corporate world and moving to Austin in 2007, Janet has devoted her energies to working with non-profits, including a stint as a researcher and writer of grants for Camp Fire USA. Recently, she has been spending some time doing the kind of writing she loves best: poetry and prose.
Janet received her B.A. from The City University of New York with a major in Theatre Arts and a minor in English. She attended the MFA program at California State University, Long Beach.