Title: Writer, Educator
Company: University of Southern California, Los Angeles
Location: Los Angeles, California, United States
James J. Ragan, PhD, LittD, Emeritus Professor and Director of the Graduate Professional Writing Program for 25 years at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Educators for dedication, achievements, and leadership in writing.
Inspired by his immigrant Slovak parents who believed heavily in education and philanthropy, Dr. Ragan developed a strong sense of compassion at a young age. Upon graduating from St. Vincent College with a Bachelor of Arts in 1966, he earned a Doctor of Philosophy and a Masters of Arts from Ohio University in 1971. Currently, he excels as Distinguished Visiting Professor of Poetry and Film at Charles University in Prague – a position he has held each summer since 1982. In addition to this role, he has had 10 published books of award-winning poetry and 3 internationally produced plays since 1971.
Earlier in his career, Dr. Ragan contributed as an assistant professor of creative writing at Ohio University, before working as a screenwriter at Paramount Pictures between 1974 and 1977. Soon thereafter, he worked for many years as a screenwriter and a lyricist for numerous production companies including MGM, Sony, CBS, Kitty Films, and Arista Films. In the past, Dr. Ragan also taught as a Visiting Professor of poetry and film at the University of Texas, El Paso (1979-1981), Cal Tech (1989-92), the University of Oklahoma (2007-09) Outside of his primary endeavors Dr. Ragan has traveled world-wide, reading his poetry in 34 countries and for 7 international heads of state.
Named“One of the 100 Coolest People in Los Angeles: Those Who Make a Difference” by Buzz Magazine, Dr. Ragan was also presented the Telly Award as host of the Poets Chamber for Beverly Hills Cable Television, The Emerson Poetry Prize, the Gertrude Claytor Memorial Award, 9 Pushcart Poetry Prize nominations, and the Humanitarian Award by the Swan Foundation. Additionally, he received an Honorary Doctor of Philosophy from St. Vincent College in 1990 and Richmond University in London (2001). Achievements to his credit include having a special collection established in his honor at Ohio University.
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