The National League of American Pen Women, Inc. awards three grants of $1,000 each in art, letters, and music to women 35 years of age or older who are not now nor ever have been a member of NLAPW. The recipients are selected via a competitive application process. Congratulations to the 2019 recipients!


Art: Tracey Landmann

Tracey LandmannTracey Landmann is an artist and writer from Wilmington, Delaware. She will work alongside children with cognitive development issues, along with their caregivers, to create fantastical, touchable worlds on loose canvas.

These environments are populated with welcoming creatures native to the scenery portrayed. The paintings are called “Moveable Murals.” Landmann has already designed and painted several murals for Go Baby Go!, which is an International pediatric mobility program headquartered at the University of Delaware.

As board member and a periodic editor for the Brain Injury Association of Delaware, Landmann designed and directed an art program for the organization. She has spoken at museums, social clubs, and a conference about the connections between perception, cognition, and expression.

The benefits derived from the creation of these murals have evolved from her experience and research in this area. The act of creating these murals is meant to serve as cognitive developmental stimulus through imaginative play specifically for those children usually deprived of the opportunity to learn in this way.

Landmann believes this experience will better enable them to face the obstacles of the ever more hectic world as they grow. She will use the grant money to buy paint, canvas, and supplies for this project.

Music: Dawna Hammers

Dawna HammersDawna Hammers plans to use her grant money to create a video for her song “Alive.”

“I deeply know the great power music has as medicine to help heal people of all ages suffering from depression, anxiety, drug and alcohol addition, grief, dementia, Alzheimer’s, etc.,” she says. “I also know music is the one thing that can help unite and uplift our society at this crucial time in history.”

Her song is wonderful, her voice is rich and warm, and she is on a mission. She will bring together many people of different ages and backgrounds and teach them a simple chant and dance honoring the four sacred elements of life: earth, air, fire, and water, as well as our own individual and collective paths and purpose in life.

“Alive” can be heard on her website at

Letters: Gwynn O’Gara

Gwyn O'GaraCalifornia poet Gwynn O’Gara’s book of poetry, “Clio’s Daughter, Girl with Head on Fire” was chosen from a large field of high-quality entries across writing genres.

O’Gara is the author of five chapbooks of poetry including “Sea Cradles,” “Winter at Green Haven,” “Fruit of Life,” “Fixer Upper,” and “Snake Woman Poems.” A longtime California Poet in the Schools, O’Gara was also a Poet Laureate of Sonoma County, California. She hopes to use the funds to attend a poetry manuscript conference to move her completed work to publishing.

“O’Gara has a fine collection of poems, echoing with deeply felt memories, and characterized by careful and evocative imagery throughout. A pleasure to read,” wrote poet Phil Memmer, finalist judge for the grant competition. Memmer is a Hawthornden fellow, the executive director of the Downtown Writers Center in Syracuse, New York, author of several published books of poetry, associate editor of Tiger Bark Press, and editor of the literary magazine Stone Canoe.