The Board of Directors of the Shuswap Association of Writers is a hard-working group of volunteers.

President & Treasurer, Kay Johnston remains Festival Chair of Word on the Lake. She is the author of two non-fiction books Spirit of Powwow and The Amazing Mazie Baker. She is proud to be an adopted member of the Baker family of the Squamish Nation.
Vice President Mary-Lou McCausland is one of SAW’s grant writers and one of the liaison  personnel for the Askew’s Foods Word on the Lake Writing Contest.
Secretary, Shirley DeKelver has published three young adult novels, The Trouble with Mandy, Lilacs & Bifocals and Child of the Ancient, as well as short stories in Voices from the Valleys and Kaleidoscope V. Her photography has been published in a number of anthologies and she is currently working on her art portfolio. Shirley is the producer of Café Lit.
Director, Ray Hudson is a retired broadcast journalist who worked with CBC Radio, DCTV, print, and business development. His involvement with the arts includes performing at the Kits Showboat in the early 60’s, being President of the Prince Rupert Arts Centre Assn and a civic committee member, which built the “Lester Centre for the Arts” in Prince Rupert. He has written the music and lyrics for 12 productions for a musical theatre camp on Gambier Island. He is currently writing and performing music and poetry (2017 Poetry winner at WOTL), working with heritage railway, doing photography, and working with SAW and Word On the Lake as co-chair of the Promotion Committee.
Director, Deanna Barnhardt Kawatski is the best-selling author of seven books, including Wilderness Mother and Clara and Me. A founding member of Word on the Lake, she has presented many workshops and readings for the festival and SAW events. Deanna is featured on the Literary Map of BC.
Director, Kay McCracken is the author of two memoirs, one children’s book, short stories, and poetry. She is a founding member of both SAW and Word on the Lake Writers’ Festival and appreciates the support and enriching environment they provide for writers.
Director Ellie McGaughey and her husband Mitch retired to Salmon Arm in 2017 from Alberta. Since then Ellie joined, and remains involved with, the Shuswap Writers Group and currently with Shuswap Association of Writers. She is a liaison with CKVS Voice of the Shuswap Community Radio in several capacities including the Writing Out Loud program, conducting interviews, performing radio plays, etc. Ellie has written one book, ‘Asea – A Journey Told’ and is presently working on two other novels.
Director, Paivi Sarre is an avid reader and promoter of literature and literacy. She is a longtime festival volunteer. She now coordinates the Blue Pencil Cafe and also does grant writing.
Director, Debra Turner is the retired campus library coordinator at Okanagan College and former college liaison to the board. In her professional capacity, she had many years of experience assisting students and faculty with research, writing, editing, and citation. Her personal interest in genealogy has sparked an interest in memoir writing. She is also the membership director.
Director, Gloria Walker is an avid reader. When she retired from a long-term career as an executive assistant in a large company, she turned her hand to creative work as a designer. She uses skills from both to be the liaison managing arrangements at the Prestige Hotel venue.
CEO (Canine Executive Officer), Sugar Westie sits on the board laps and enjoys our social events. While she is a relatively new member, she has quickly risen in the ranks.