Beloved writer, teacher and photographer James Baker Hall died June 25 at his home near Sadieville, Kentucky. Hall, 74, was prolific as both a writer and a visual artist, publishing widely in both arenas. He graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1957, earned a master of arts at Stanford, and taught at several universities before becoming an English professor at UK in 1973. He served as director of UK’s creative writing program for 25 years and was named Kentucky Poet Laureate in 2001. Among his many awards, Hall received a Stegner Fellowship, a Pushcart Prize, an O. Henry Prize and an honorable mention in the San Francisco Art Institute Film Festival.
A memorial service will be held July 11 from 4 to 5 p.m. in Lexington’s Gratz Park. If the weather is forbidding, the ceremony will move inside the Carnegie Center. A reception will follow in the Carnegie Center, with food. drink and poetry. Attendees may celebrate Hall’s life by bringing a poem to read.