Founded and operated as a non-profit organization, Irish American Writers & Artists, Inc. (IAW&A) welcomes Irish-American writers, actors, filmmakers, musicians and artists of every (and no) religion. As well as celebrating the achievements of Irish-American writers and artists, past and present, IAW&A’s purpose is to highlight, energize and encourage Irish Americans working in the arts. IAW&A is committed both to bringing together the Irish American creative community in new self-awareness and to being a force for inter-ethnic and interracial solidarity, understanding and active cooperation.
In the long tradition of Irish resistance to oppression and struggle for liberty, IAW&A supports free speech, the rights of immigrants, the equality and dignity of all—regardless of race, gender, religion or sexual orientation – and the process of peaceful, positive social change in the U.S., Ireland and around the world. While avoiding party affiliation and endorsing no candidates for public office, IAW&A is outspoken in defense of artistic freedom, human rights and social justice.
As a national organization dedicated to fostering bonds of mutual support and shared purpose, IAW&A fills the vacuum that results from the fact that, despite the variety and vitality of creative expression within the Irish diaspora in America, individual artists and writers as well as arts organizations often exist with little or no knowledge of one another.
Our Primary Goals
IAW&A serves as a rallying point and sponsor for Irish Americans in the arts. In addition to staging its own events and keeping members abreast of each other’s projects and accomplishments, it works with local, regional and national cultural and artistic organizations to cross promote and spread awareness of performances, concerts, exhibitions and readings. It calls attention to the lifetime achievements of outstanding Irish American writers and artists, holds fundraisers and solicits donations for members-in-need and, as resources permit, provides emergency assistance.
We seek to motivate and spotlight new forms and new levels of creative expression; expand opportunities for imagination and dissent; fight racism, ethnic stereotypes and mindless conformity; and encourage the fullest participation of our community in the redeeming endeavor of the arts. As writers and artists, this is our duty. As Irish Americans, it is the most vital way we know to celebrate our heritage, explore our traditions and embrace the future.