Meet Your UPPAA Board
of Directors…Volunteers All
PRESIDENT: Victor R. Volkman served as UPPAA webmaster from 2009 – 2019 and President since 2019. Victor is the owner of Modern History Press, which tells stories of conflict and the struggle for identity in modern times. Most recently, Modern History Press has published the U.P. Reader, an anthology of stories, essays, and poetry written entirely by UPPAA members and distributed throughout the UP. He is the book reviewer for Marquette Monthly magazine and created the U.P. Book Review to give even more exposure to U.P. literature. He received a BS in Computer Science (class of ’86) from Michigan Technological University in Houghton, MI.
VICE-PRESIDENT: Terri Martin has been a member of UPPAA for many years and finds it not only invaluable in the information and opportunities it presents, but also an inspiration for people who have the calling to write. Terri has a master’s degree in English from NMU and has worked in higher education for 12 years. Additionally, she worked for a non-profit as grant writer. Eventually, Terri decided that there was more to life than commuting (perhaps one too many times waiting for the infamous Portage Canal lift bridge) and it was time to end the decades-long writer’s hiatus. Though she is currently a seasonal worker at Baraga State Park, she finds plenty of time to procrastinate and stare out the window instead of madly typing at the keyboard. But at least there is no commute involved.
Terri’s first book, A Family Trait, which is a middle-grade novel, was first published in 1999 by Holiday House in New York and was republished by Modern History Press under the title Voodoo Shack in 2023. A second middle-grade children’s book, The Home Wind, came out in 2021 and has been recognized as a UP Notable Book. After writing a monthly column for years for UP Magazine (Porcupine Press Publications), Martin anthologized her humorous stories into books: Church Lady Chronicles: Devilish Encounters (2020), High on the Vine: Featuring Yooper Entrepreneurs Tami & Evi Maki (2022), and her most recent collection, Roadkill Justice (2023). Terri also has a full-length novel, Moose Willow Mystery, which was published in 2022. Terri’s books are available in print and eBook on Amazon and Barnes and Noble or through her website TerriLynnMartin.com.
NOTABLE BOOKS CHAIR: Mikel B. Classen has been writing and photographing northern Michigan in newspapers and magazines for forty years, creating feature articles about the life and culture of Michigan’s north country. A journalist, historian, photographer and author with a fascination of the world around him, he enjoys researching and writing about lost stories from the past. He is founder of the U.P. Reader and is a member of the Board of Directors for the Upper Peninsula Publishers and Authors Association. In 2020, Mikel won the Historical Society of Michigan’s George Follo Award for Upper Peninsula History.
Classen makes his home in the oldest city in Michigan, historic Sault Ste. Marie. He is also a collector of out-of-print history books, and historical photographs and prints of Upper Michigan. At Northern Michigan University, he studied English, history, journalism and photography.
His book, Au Sable Point Lighthouse, Beacon on Lake Superior’s Shipwreck Coast, was published in 2014 and followed in 2015 by Teddy Roosevelt and the Marquette Libel Trial, both by the History Press. His fiction book, Lake Superior Tales, won the 2020 U.P. Notable Book Award. Points North is a 2019 non-fiction travel book, which received the Historical Society of Michigan’s “Outstanding Michigan History Publication,” along with a 2021 U.P. Notable Book Award. Since then, he has released True Tales: the Forgotten History of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, and Faces, Places, & Days Gone By: a Pictorial History of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Mikel is co-author of the Yooper Ale Trails along with Jon C. Stott, all published by Modern History Press. In late 2023, Mikel released his first novel, The Alexandria Code, an Isabella Carter Adventure, published by Modern History Press.
To learn more about Mikel B. Classen and to see more of his work, go to his website at www.mikelbclassen.com.
TREASURER: Larry Buege has a BS degree (Chemistry), BA degree (Psychology), and a BS in Medicine degree (PA Program), hardly a background for a literary career, but in 1999 he was diagnosed with vocal cord cancer. It was questionable if he would ever speak again. Looking for a way to earn a living without speech, he turned to writing. Little did he know there is no money in writing. He is now seventeen years cancer free with limited speech, but has an addiction for writing.
Buege now has twelve books with his name on the spine. His novels come in a variety of genres including Cold Turkey (regional humor), Super Mensa (techno-thriller), and Miracle in Cade County (love story/mystery). Currently his best-selling novels are his Native American Series, which takes place 100 years B.C. (Before Columbus). Buege has been treasurer of UPPAA since 2015 and enjoys counting other people’s money. Buege enjoys spearheading the annual Dandelion Cottage Short Story Contest even more than playing with UPPAA’s money. “We have a lot of great talent out there, and we are training our replacements, but that is good,” Larry says.
RECORDING SECRETARY: Sharon Kennedy has been an opinion writer for the past ten years for Gatehouse, now Gannett Media. This means her work might be picked up by any Gannett newspaper that wants it, in addition to Yahoo, AOL, and various other websites. For years she wrote for the Bay Mills News, Marquette Mining Journal, herviewfromhome.com, go60.com, the Mackinac Journal, and the outdoor publication, Woods-n-Water. Starting in 2024, the Drummond Island Digest, a monthly newspaper, will once again run her stuff. In the 1970s, Sharon was a speechwriter in the Detroit office of U.S. Senator Donald Riegle and a contributor to Detroit Monthly magazine and Phase Two, a private inner-city newspaper. She self-published one book in 2016, and more recently Modern History Press has published four. She has a B.A. from Wayne State University, and an M.A. from NMU. She moved to Normal, IL, in 2002 and started working on a Ph.D. in English at Illinois State, but quit before the semester was out. She’s also a sneeze away from becoming an ordained non-denominational preacher. Sharon has taught English Comp and Research at Bay Mills Community College and LSSU. She moved back to the U.P. in 1984 and twelve years later to the land of her parents, where she resides today. She is writing the third and last book in her SideRoad Kids series. “I’ll be 77 in April and will continue expressing my opinions as long as Gannett keeps paying for them,” Sharon says. Visit her site online at www.AuthorSharonKennedy.com.
MEMBERSHIP CHAIR: Brandy Thomas is a professional editor who lives and works in Marquette, Michigan. In addition to editing the written word, she is also an audiobook narrator and audio engineer. She is the voice of the U.P. Reader as well as several other series. Brandy began serving on the UPPAA board in 2015-16 as Recording Secretary and has been Membership Chair since 2016. She also serves as the Director of Development on the Revolve CC (Creative Collaboration Conference) board of directors. When she is not refining other’s words, she writes poetry and short fiction, quilts, and is a musician. www.ThomasEditing.com.
NEWSLETTER EDITOR: Jansina Grossman is the owner of a nontraditional publishing company, Rivershore Books (www.rivershorebooks.com), and is a self-published author of three novels and two short stories. She’s spent the past decade editing and designing books for other authors, combining her love of words and graphic design. She is based out of Minneapolis, MN, and is pleased to be a member of UPPAA.
CHAIR OF PUBLICATIONS: Deborah K. Frontiera grew up in Lake Linden, MI. She taught in Houston public schools from 1985 until 2008, and then worked part time for Houston’s Writers In The Schools program for six more years. In 2019, she and her husband moved back to the Copper Country, but they do head south for part of the winter each year. She has written for both children and adults, fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. Several of her books, in and out of print, have won awards. She is currently the editor for the annual UP Reader. Visit her website at www.authorsden.com/deborahkfrontiera
WEBMASTER: Jodi Perras is a writer and communications professional who grew up near the small town of Nadeau, Michigan. She publishes an on-line blog that recounts early Menominee County history, seen through the eyes of her great-grandmother, 20-year-old Minnie Gamache. Combining historical research with entries from Minnie’s 1904 diary, the blog recreates life in a French-Canadian farming and lumber community at the turn of the 20th century. In 2022, she received the Jacob Platt Dunn Jr. Award from the Indiana Historical Society for her article in Traces of Indiana magazine: Hoosier Blackface Minstrel Shows, Embraced and Detested, Performed and Protested. Jodi worked in journalism, government and non-profit environmental advocacy before entering semi-retirement in 2019. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and political science from Butler University. She lives in Indianapolis with her husband, Joe, and their rescued English Setter, Ruby. Visit her blog at leavesofmenominee.com.
Looking for Historical Record of Past UPPAA Board Members ?