Lan Samantha Chang Named Director of the Iowa Writers' Workshop

by Staff

The University of Iowa recently named fiction writer Lan Samantha Chang as the new director of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Chang, who currently teaches creative writing at Harvard, will begin at Iowa in January 2006.

The 40-year-old writer succeeds Frank Conroy, who announced his retirement last summer and died April 6 of colon cancer at age 69.

“It’s a great privilege to follow Frank as director,” says Chang, who was a student at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop in the 1990s. “I think of him every time I walk into a classroom.”

The author of Hunger: A Novella and Stories (Norton, 1998) and the novel Inheritance (Norton, 2004), Chang is the first Asian-American and the first woman to hold the position in the program’s nearly 70-year history.