The Kouhi Award
The Kouhi Award was established by NOWW in 1999 to recognize “outstanding contributions to the literature of Northwestern Ontario.” It is named in honour of poet Elizabeth Kouhi.
The first recipient of the Kouhi Award was Elizabeth Kouhi. Since then, Elinor Barr, Charles Wilkins, the Thunder Bay Writers Guild, Rosalind Maki, Penny Petrone, Mary Frost, Jean E. Pendziwol, Dorothy Colby, Joan Skelton, Hazel Fulford, Bill MacDonald, Sharon Irvine, John Pringle and Richard Wagamese have been honoured.
NOWW offers several awards intended to recognize achievement in the field literature and writing in Northwestern Ontario–the Kouhi Award and the Margaret Phillips Award.
Nominations for each of these awards open in January of each year. The awards are presented at the annual Literary Awards Party, usually held in May. To submit a nomination, send a brief (two pages maximum) statement describing why the person or organization you’re nominating deserves the award to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Margaret Phillips Award (Previously the Burnford Award)
The Margaret Phillips Award was first awarded in 2009 to recognize a “builder,” someone who has made outstanding contributions to publishing, promoting, or supporting the literature of Northwestern Ontario. The intent is to separate recognition for actual writing, recognized by the Kouhi Award, from recognition for supporting the practice and community writing in Northwestern Ontario.
The first Burnford Award was given to the Thunder Bay Public Library. The 2010 winner was the Sleeping Giant Writers Festival, the 2011 winners were Barb Matousek and Wendy MacDonald and the 2012 winners were the founders of NOWW (Deborah de Bakker, Rosalind Maki, Charles Wilkins and Jim Foulds). .
2016 marks the first year of the renamed Margaret Phillips award.