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Our vision is to is to create a lasting contribution to the literary arts by providing a sanctuary where writing is nurtured, honored, and shared. 


The mission of the Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow (WCDH) is to nurture writers of all backgrounds, genres, and levels of experience in a supportive environment that builds community, stimulates new thinking, energizes creative expression, and optimizes productivity.


The Writers' Colony nurtures writers of all backgrounds, which means we want to ensure everyone considering coming to The Writers' Colony and participating in our programming feel welcome, included, and encouraged. This goal is being realized by the following actions:

  • We seek out feedback and participation from our Writers in Residence who come from marginalized communities.

  • We seek out organizations who serve people from marginalized communities for collaboration and feedback.

  • With the assistance of alumni DW McKinney, we have developed an Ambassadors program to connect potential Writers in Residence with our alumni from similar backgrounds.


For more information on our inclusivity efforts, please contact us at

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Joe Coykandall

President of the Board

Joe has worked only in the nonprofit sector for the last 20 years of his career, having retired as Executive Director for Finance for Educational Testing Service.  Most recently he served as President and a Director of the Grassy Knob Voluntary Fire Association.  He has also served as CFO of San Antonio Housing Authorities, one of the nation’s largest public housing authorities.  Prior to his work with nonprofits, he was EVP and CFO of a large, Arizona based, public utility company in addition to being a Director on numerous corporate boards for banks and investment companies.

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Laura Matson Hahn

Vice President

Laura was born in Chicago, raised in Northern New Jersey, educated in Rhode Island and Michigan, lived in Pennsylvania, and recently moved to Arkansas.  She received a Master’s in Communications and spent 30 years working in communications, cutting her teeth on the then new cable TV industry, and moving into corporate communications. Her attention then turned to crafting her novel, The Heart Code, an homage to bohemian culture inspired by her life-long commitment to the philosophy of living according to the heart’s voice and wisdom.  Later, she shared her gifts with students of creative writing and performance of literature, two of her deepest joys.  Upon relocating to Beaver Lake in 2018, she and her husband dove into the country life raising guinea hens and dogs, developing their 3 acres, and participating in community activities. 

KJ Kumwalt

Board Member

KJ Zumwalt is a long-time Eureka Springs resident. She has been an award-winning restaurateur for more than 20 years, currently chef/owner of KJ's Caribe Restaurant and Cantina Mexican Restaurant in Eureka Springs. She is originally from Arkansas and attended Harding University, where she received  a Bachelor of Business Administration in Business Marketing. She loves to kayak, hike, and swim in the great outdoors of the Ozarks in Northwest Arkansas.

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Tricia Evans


Tricia Evans is a retired community college Dean of Business serving in Seattle and Southern California. Prior to that she has experience training in industry, sales, marketing and advertising. Since retiring, working has meant fixing-up rentals wielding paint brushes and taking kitchen appliances apart to detail. She lived in the Philippines in her 20’s and again as a retiree for a total of about 15 years. Both times allowed for traveling around Asia and hometown community involvement in education, tourism and contributing to the local newspaper. Like most folks who move to the Eureka Springs area she visited a friend, and the rest is recent history. 

Brooks Garner

Board Member

Brooks was an Associate Professor at Oklahoma State University for 26 years before retiring and moving to Fayetteville in 2011 with his wife, Linda Leavell.  During the OSU years he taught a variety of courses in Public Relations and Mass Communications. He was also active in developing and producing Outreach Programs to serve a variety of university audiences. Brooks was born in Little Rock. At a very early age he moved with his family to Tulsa where he spent most of his growing up years. He earned both a BA and MA in Mass Communications from the University of Oklahoma.

Dann Richardson

Board Member

Dann Richardson was born in Rockingham, North Carolina where he began learning the graphic arts working in his father’s print shop. He began his advertising/broadcast career (to everyone’s surprise) at age 16, working at WAYN radio station as an announcer, while also attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Dann served in the United States Air Force at the Defense Language Institute for Russian Studies where he  worked as an analyst, subsequently

moving to New Orleans to work at WNOE radio as an announcer/voice-over artist. At the age of 30, he incorporated HeliosGraphics, a graphic design firm.

Janet Allured

Board Member

Janet Allured, Ph.D., retired Professor of History and Women’s Studies at McNeese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana, is currently adjunct professor of Women’s History at the University of Arkansas. She has authored numerous peer-reviewed articles on southern women and has co-edited several volumes in Louisiana history, including one in the University of Georgia Press’s series on southern women entitled Louisiana Women: Their Lives and Times (2009). Remapping Second-Wave Feminism: The Long Women’s Rights Movement in Louisiana, 1950-1997, was also published with Georgia (2016). She is currently working on books about southern progressive women in the twentieth century.

Elise Roenigk


Jude Gaillot

Board Member

Jude Gaillot is an open-source software developer and former journalist. A native of New Orleans, he published an arts and entertainment newspaper in Pensacola, Florida, in the late 1990s, and now lives in Eureka Springs. He is working on his first book, Welcome to Eureka Springs: The I-Sh*t-You-Not History of America's Quirkiest Town.

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