Board of Directors

  • Ken Pelham, President
  • Nylda Dieppa, Vice President
  • Melody Dimick, President Emerita
  • Nancy Quatrano, Secretary
  • Nate Hoffelder
  • Ella Vega
  • Brenda Spalding
  • Scott Powers
  • Hans Kairies
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Ken Pelham, President

Ken Pelham has won eleven Royal Palm Literary Awards for fiction and nonfiction. A member of International Thriller Writers, his suspense novels Brigands Key and Place of Fear won first-place RPLAs.

His nonfiction book, Out of Sight, Out of Mind: A Writer’s Guide to Mastering Viewpoint, was named RPLA 2015 Published Book of the Year, and Gumshoes, Fangs, Rockets, & Spies: How Literary Genres Evolve and Change Our World, won the 2021 RPLA Gold for History. For a fun glimpse into the ideas in Gumshoes, visit Ken’s interactive timeline, The Evolution of Genres.

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Nylda Dieppa, Vice President

Nylda Dieppa is a Puerto Rican poet and writer. Learning to read at age three, she’s loved literature and art since. Nylda’s work has been published in Cadence, Of Poets & Poetry, Somos en Escrito, La Respuesta, and America magazines. Her book Alborada: A Poetic Memoir Across Cultures won a Royal Palm Literary Award. Orange Blossom Publishing will print a second, enhanced edition in 2023, under the name Alborada: A Cross-Cultural Memoir in Poetry.

Nylda has degrees in philosophy, fashion design, and pastoral ministry. She nurtures a community of creatives changing the world through her website and newsletter “Word Sketches.”


Melody Dimick, President Emerita

Melody Dean Dimick, FWF President Emerita, is an RPLA winner and author of several short stories and poems published in the Florida Writers Association’s Collection anthologies. Readers may follow her blog at

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Nancy Quatrano, Secretary

Nancy Quatrano is a former columnist and award-winning author. Since 2013 she has operated On-Target Words which offers editing and specialized publishing services. She's passionate about helping people to read well. Contact:

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Ella Vega

Gabriela Reyes, or Ella Vega, as her readers call her, is a bilingual author with internationally sold books, such as Quepos: A Box of Secrets and a ‘Pura Vida’ Adventure, and Marisol the Sunflower. Ella’s background in architecture helps her visualize vivid fictional environments, while her experiences living abroad help her recognize social issues. Her latest venture, Musa Magazine, aims to give Hispanic women the necessary tools to thrive in their community.

As a director of the Florida Writers Foundation, Ella provides a voice to underrepresented cultures that have been part of Florida’s ethnic landscape since the beginning. Ella is also part of the hard-of-hearing and epileptic communities, which allows her to understand the importance of writing and reading as a form of healing and connection.

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Brenda Spalding

Brenda M. Spalding is a prolific award-winning author. She is a frequent speaker at writers conferences and area writers groups where her knowledge of publishing and marketing is always welcome.

She is a past president of the National League of American Pen Women- Sarasota Branch, a member of the Sarasota Authors Connection, Sarasota Fiction Writers, Florida Authors and Publishers, and a co-founding member and current president of ABC Books Inc.

Her company, Braden River Consulting LLC was formed to help other authors on their creative journey.

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Scott Powers

Scott Michael Powers is an author of thrillers inspired and directed by aspects of science fiction or other speculative fictions. His next novel, The Murder Plague is set to be published by Black Rose Writing in 2023. Previously published works include the UFO-hunt novel The Roswell Swatch and the short stories “The Brazilian Millionaire’s Butler” and “The Thirteenth Floor.” He is a former political journalist who lives in Orlando with his wife Connie. He is in search of The Florida Man, seeking ways to include him in stories.


Hans Kairies

Hans Kairies spent a successful career as a professional fund raiser for conservation organizations and the arts. Prior to that he worked in media relations for several public entities where his work included writing speeches for elected state officials, as well as articles for agency publications. He is pleased to serve on the board of the Florida Writers Foundation and work to further its ambitious mission.

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Nate Hoffelder, Webmaster

​Nate has been helping people fix broken tech since 2010. He turns broken down WordPress sites into sites which convert visitors into superfans, also builds sites from scratch, and helps authors with their social media and newsletters.

When he is not volunteering, he writes bad jokes on Twitter and creates memes and graphics.​ In his spare time, Nate maintains ​three Little Free Libraries.