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Al Pittman

Al Pittman was born in St. Leonard’s, Placentia Bay, Newfoundland in 1940. At a young age, Pittman left Placentia Bay to move to Corner Brook. Pittman stayed in Corner Brook throughout his childhood and teenage years. Later he would head out to pursue further education at Salem Teacher’s College, and at St. Thomas University in New Brunswick. With his teaching degree, Pittman taught across Newfoundland, as well as in Quebec, before settling into a long-term position in the English Department at Memorial University – St. John’s campus, then Sir Wilfred Grenfell College in Corner Brook. In 1966, Pittman published his first book of poems, ­The Elusive Resurrection, and in 1973, Pittman, with Dick Buehler, Pat Byrne, Tom Dawe and Clyde Rose, began Breakwater Books – a publishing house that focuses on publishing books with authors from or content about Newfoundland and Labrador. From 1999 until his death in 2001, Pittman was a writer-in-residence at Grenfell College.

Awards and Honours: 

Lydia Campbell Award for Creative Writing, 1985; Stephen Leacock Centennial Award; Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council Hall of Honour Inductee, 1999 Writer’s Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador Book Award for Poetry, 2001.

Principal Residences: 

Placentia Bay, Newfoundland; Corner Brook, Newfoundland; Montréal, Québec