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Walter Evans Kidd

1901 – 1990

Walter Evans Kidd was a noted poet and short-story writer and held numerous academic positions during his career. He was born in Long Creek, Oregon, in 1901 and was raised in the Portland area. Kidd attended the University of Oregon, earning a BA in 1926 and an MA in 1935, both in English. As a university student, Kidd wrote for the Oregon Daily Emerald and was a member of Delta Upsilon Fraternity and Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society. He also earned an MFA from the University of Iowa. During the 1930s, he taught at Washington High School in Portland. Kidd earned his PhD from the University of Denver in 1943.

During his career, Kidd held teaching posts at the University of Nebraska, Stephen F. Austin State College, Fresno State College, and the University of Michigan. He published four books of poetry, two scholarly books, and numerous articles. Many of his works were published under the pseudonym Conrad Pendleton. Kidd was also director of the Pineywood Writers conference.

In 1926, Kidd married Nancy Olivia Pendleton, who had also attended the University of Oregon. In their later years, the two established the Walter and Nancy Kidd Fund to award prizes and awards to undergraduate writing students at the UO. After his retirement, they resided mainly in Portland. Walter Kidd passed away in 1990, leaving an endowment of over one million dollars to support undergraduate creative writers at the University of Oregon. Walter and Nancy Kidd’s passion for writing and literature lives on in the Kidd Program, as their gift allows generations of emerging writers to pursue art.

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