APAEP Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project

Administrative Staff

Kyes Stevens, APAEP Founder and Director

Kyes Stevens is the founder and director of the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project at Auburn University. Starting in 2001, she has worked to design and build an innovative and sustainable outreach program that works with the underserved adult prison population in Alabama. Stevens oversees all aspects of APAEP programming. She has served as a grants reviewer for the National Endowment for the Arts and the Alabama State Council on the Arts, was an inaugural member of an emerging arts administrators organization in Alabama, and works in advisory capacities nationally for individuals and programs seeking to develop arts and education programming within prisons. She is the fourth generation of her family to work in Outreach at Auburn University and was awarded an Auburn University Young Alumni Award for her efforts building APAEP. She was also an inaugural recipient of the Lillian E. Smith Writer in Service Award and continues to publish poems.

Shaelyn Smith, Program Coordinator

Shaelyn Smith is a program coordinator for the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project at Auburn University. Shaelyn grew up in northern Michigan and holds an MFA in creative nonfiction. She moved south in 2012 after a brief stint in New York City and began teaching composition at the University of Alabama and creative writing workshops at a girls' detention center. She first taught with APAEP in Spring of 2016, before moving into an administrative role.

Rob Hitt, Program Coordinator

Rob Hitt is a program coordinator for the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project. Rob was born and raised in Washington State. He received his MA in English from Western Washington University in 2013 and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Alabama in 2017. Rob taught with the program as a Prison Arts Fellow at UA before starting as a program coordinator.

Cory Unruh, Outreach and Administration