Angela Elam

Assistant Teaching Professor

Office: 107 University House
Ph: 816-235-1337


Angela Elam is the producer and host of New Letters on the Air, UMKC’s nationally distributed literary radio show. She has worked in public radio since 1988, but she got her start as a reader for Radio Deutsche Welle in Cologne, Germany in 1981. A graduate of Clemson University’s English Department, she received a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Georgia in dramatic writing. Immediately upon graduation, she was seduced into public radio at WUGA-FM in Athens, Georgia where she produced literary programs and later served as host and technical producer of the Public Radio News Directors Award-winning local magazine show, Centerlines.

Elam has also produced radio dramas and special features, including some freelance stories for National Public Radio, one of which “Train Whistles or Horns?” won the PRNDI Award for best used of sound in 1994. Since 1996, she has served as producer/host of New Letters on the Air. More recent recognitions include being a finalist for the 2010 New York Festivals International Radio Arts & Culture Award for “The Cruelest Month” a poetry compilation for National Poetry Month; a 2011 Clarion Award from the Association for Women in Communications for Women’s Issues Radio with “When She Named Fire”–a show about women publishing poetry in America– and a 2013 Clarion Award for Best Radio Talk or Interview Program. In 2014, she received the Simons Public Humanities Fellowship with the Hall Center for Humanities at the University of Kansas.

Currently, Elam enjoys teaching radio production with the Communication Studies Department, while producing the weekly radio show, New Letters on the Air, and collaborating with UMKC’s New Letters magazine, BkMk Press, KCUR-FM and the student media organization, She regularly accepts and trains radio and literary interns throughout the year. To listen to some of her productions, visit

Specialities: Contemporary Literature, Audio Production.