This year's recipient of the Stephen Henderson Award, named in memory of the late literary critic and editor of Understanding the New Black Poetry, is Harryette Mullen. The award was presented during a reception at the American Literature Association in San Francisco, organized by Shirley Moody-Turner and the AALCS with contributions from the ALA and many of the African American author societies.. Clarence Major was on hand following his own reading for a round of visiting and book signing. This year the Toni Morrison Society, one of the reception's co-sponsors, also presented their annual awards for best essay, best book, etc.
AALCS President James Peterson kicked things off. Former President Loretta Woodard gave a hearty introduction to this year's honoree. Harryette Mullen made a few comments on receiving the award (presented by Keith Byerman) and then read from Sleeping with the Dictionary as well as from her work in progress, Tanka Diaries.