Elizabeth Yahn Williams is an award-winning poet-playwright who prefers performing in poetic dramas to practicing in the legal profession that was her career from the late 60s to 80s.
Still, she thanks LMU and Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, for enriching her treasury from which to print stories. While always a writer, Elizabeth has been a teacher since second grade at St. Catharine School in Columbus, Ohio, where she covered first grade when the nun-in-charge was called away. Later, at Marymount High School and St. Mary of the Springs Academy, her work in creative communications led her to obtain a scholarship at Marymount College, PVE, CA, where she graduated cum laude, and subsequently received a Ford Foundation grant to join a pilot program at UCLA, culminating in a lifetime California Secondary Teaching credential in English.
Earning a Juris Doctor at Loyola University, she embarked on a career as an attorney and law professor. Attempting to avoid bankruptcy, she learned enough about it that the subject became her specialty, which she taught to other lawyers for several years, along with arbitration law. She also became involved in the struggle against gender discrimination in the legal profession by helping to found California Women Lawyers.
Noticing that the law provided far too much work for far too little joy in life, she shifted careers and became a poet, playwright, and educator. For her mentoring honor students at Mira Costa College, she was made a "Most Distinguished Honorary" life member of their Phi Theta Kappa chapter. With a grant from KOCT, Dr. Williams wrote, directed and hosted a TV mini-series about that group and other cultural opportunities in North San Diego County that won an award as a Telly Finalist.
She co-founded the Oceanside Library's National Authors' Day and since its inception has been Co-Editor with Bob Lundy of the SUMMATION: The Merging of Poetry and Art series, a project of the Escondido Municipal Gallery and Poets INC. Their project recently inspired a cable film production entitled Creative Collaborations that has run throughout San Diego.
She is a member of the Publishers and Writers of San Diego and its Read Local initiative, as well as Librarian and a Standing Chair of the National League of American Pen Women, whose national and branch contests have honored her with several awards. Her grants include those from SDPA-PMA/BookExpo 2000 Publishing University, Vermont Studio Center, National Audio Theatre Foundation, SLS ̶ Montreal, Canada, and Virginia Center for the Creative Arts: Auvillar, France. Other foreign studies include a year at the University of London, England, and a term at the University of Quebec at Trois Rivieres, Canada.
Besides the volumes cited in the H&Y publications, Elizabeth's SEASONAL REFLECTIONS, an 2008 Unpublished Poetry Chapbook Finalist in the San Diego Book and Writing Awards competition, was published in 2009.
Most recently she compiled Marymount Memories for LMU's class of '64 and will release Let's Celebrate Haiku! (written to Marion Wong's abstract art) in 2015.
As former Director of the poetry program at the Solana Beach Library in 2005-'06, Dr. Williams met its co-founder, Robert Thomas Lundy, her "Partner-in-Rhyme" with whom she has authored eight chapbooks from which they perform as the team of Hither & Yahn.