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, Richard Wagamese, Michael Christie,Joan M. Baril and Ruby Slipperjack have been honoured.
NOWW offers two awards intended to recognize achievement in the field of literature and writing in Northwestern Ontario.
Nominations open in January of each year. The awards are presented at the annual Literary Awards Party. 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)
This Award was first established in 2009 to recognize a “builder,” either a group or individual who has made outstanding contributions to publishing, promoting, or supporting the literature of Northwestern Ontario. The intent is to recognize those who support the practice and community of writing, as distinct from the Kouhi Award which recognizes writers.
The first Burnford Award was given to the Thunder Bay Public Library. Winners include the Sleeping Giant Writers Festival (2010), Barb Matousek and Wendy MacDonald (2011) and the founders of NOWW (Deborah de Bakker, Rosalind Maki, Charles Wilkins and Jim Foulds) (2012).
2016 marked the first year of the renamed Margaret Phillips award.
Nominations for the Kouhi and Margaret Phillips Awards
open January 1 of each year, with a deadline of March 31.
If you feel there is a deserving candidate for either award, put KP Awards in the email subject line and submit to: