Estelina Quinatoa Cotacachi

Estelina Quinatoa Cotacachi (Riobamba, October 1, 1953) is a distinguished Ecuadorian historian and curator of Kichwa Otavalo heritage. Her extensive qualifications include a Bachelor’s in Applied Anthropology from the Salesian Polytechnic University, a Master’s in Conservation and Cultural Asset Management from Universidad SEK, and the title of Anthropology expert from Universidad Abierta de Loja. She has contributed significantly as an Educational Guide at the Museum and Galleries of the Central Bank of Ecuador and later as an Assistant at the Archaeological Reserve of the Central Bank of Ecuador. Internationally acclaimed, she has conducted courses and conferences across the Americas and Europe. Her prolific publications and research reflect her unwavering commitment to preserving Ecuador’s cultural heritage, culminating in her prestigious induction into the National Academy of History of Ecuador in June 2021.

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Gladys Paredes Bonilla

Gladys Erminia Paredes Bonilla (Riobamba, 1965) is an Ecuadorian poet and educator. She is a member of the literary section of the Chimborazo chapter of the House of Ecuadorian Culture. She represented Ecuador at the 2020 “Second Virtual Book Fair Italy.” Bonilla is part of the “Vuelo de Mujer” movement, a group of 45 women using poetry to combat violence against women and promote respect. Her 2018 poetry collection “Instantes,” was published by the Chimborazo branch of the House of Ecuadorian Culture.

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José de Orozco

José de Orozco (Riobamba, March 18, 1733) was a renowned Jesuit priest and poet. Educated at the University of San Gregorio Magno in Quito, he joined the Society of Jesus in 1748 and devoted himself to both religious service and academic pursuits. However, the expulsion of the Jesuits from Spanish territories in 1767 marked a significant shift in his life. After resettling in Italy, Orozco turned to literature as a means of expressing his feelings of exile and nostalgia, most notably in his poem “Lamentos de la musa de Chimbaraso aflijida con las penas de su destierro,” a deeply nostalgic poem reflecting his longing for his homeland. Among his other significant works, “La Conquista de Menorca” stands out as a monumental epic poem, earning Orozco a place among the great poets of the 18th-century Spanish colonial period.

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Manuel Zabala Ruiz

Manuel Zabala Ruiz (Riobamba, 1928) is an Ecuadorian poet and university professor. He was a member of the “Caminos” group. He won several Ecuadorian national prizes, including First Prize of the Ismael Pérez Pazmiño Poetry Contest for Los cuadernos del salmista. His published poetry books include: La risa encadenada (1964), Teoría de lo simple (1970), Rumbo al otoño (1986), Obra poética completa (1998) and Poesía junta (2006).

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Jacqueline Costales

Jacqueline Costales de Torres, born Lourdes Jacqueline Costales Terán (Riobamba, 1964) is an Ecuadorian poet, writer, columnist, and former university professor. She has published 5 poetry books, a book of short stories, and a nonfiction book. She has also written for the regional magazine Panorama and the Riobamba newspaper La Prensa as a columnist. She is a member of the House of Ecuadorian Culture of Chimborazo, the “Grupo América” Cultural Corporation, and the Association of Contemporary Writers of Ecuador, where she serves as vice president. The National Assembly of Ecuador honored Jacqueline Costales for her contributions to Ecuadorian culture and education by bestowing upon her the “Doctora Matilde Hidalgo de Prócel” Award in 2020. She’s the founder and director of the Casa Cultural Somos Arte Foundation, a non-profit organization with the mission of making art accessible to people of all social classes.

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Jorge Rivadeneyra

Jorge Rivadeneyra Altamirano (Riobamba, 1930) is an Ecuadorian novelist, short story writer, essayist, columnist, and professor. His first novel, “Ya está amaneciendo,” appeared in 1957. He has written several books of short stories, including: “Encrucijada” (1960), “Ismata” (1993), and “Chacamandaca”(2015). Since 2002, he has lived in Caracas, Venezuela, where he has taught doctoral students at Venezuela’s Central University as a Professor of Social Sciences.

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Saranelly de Lamas

Saranelly de Lamas, aka Saranelly Toledo de Lamas (Riobamba, 1933 – Guayaquil, 1992) was a poet, journalist and fiction writer. As a journalist she was the Cultural Correspondent of the newspapers El País and Occidente (Cali, Colombia) and El Tiempo de Bogota (New York, U.S.) and editor of the Art Page of the newspaper El Nacional (Caracas, Vezenuela). Her major works include: “Revenant” (1961), “Crónicas para un lugar desconocido” (1982) “Orfeo y otros cantos,” and “Los peces de jade cantan a la Paz.”

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Susana Costales Terán

Susana Costales Terán (Riobamba, March 24, 1960) is a writer and poet. She has twice served as president of the Association of Contemporary Women Writers of Ecuador, Matriz Chimborazo. She is also a member of the House of Ecuadorian Culture in Chimborazo, President of the musical group Rondalla de Riobamba, President of the Los Superstar Club, and President of the Club Antifaz. Her father was the renowned writer Luis Alberto Costales. She is currently a language and literature teacher at Unidad Educativa Jefferson, a school in the Riobamba canton. She also directs a cultural radio program, gives free public speaking classes, and conducts literary workshops and conferences. She owns and operates Café Libro El Zaguán, a cafe which aims to serve as a cultural meeting spot for poetry, art and music; it holds poetry recitals at the end of each month.

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Laura Hidalgo Alzamora

Laura Hidalgo Alzamora (Riobamba, November 18, 1937) is an Ecuadorian writer, scholar, literary critic, and professor. She is the author of several books on Ecuadorian literature, such as “La mujer en la literatura ecuatoriana de tradición oral” (1989), “Décimas esmeraldeñas” (1990), and “Un lenguaje desnudo” (1995). From 1989-1990, she was the secretary general of the House of Ecuadorian Culture. Since May 11, 2016, she has been a corresponding member of Ecuador’s Academy of Language. She has lectured on Ecuadorian literature at conferences in Peru, Austria, and the U.S., including Boston, New Mexico and Kentucky. Since 1993, she has been a literature professor at the San Francisco University of Quito (USFQ).

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Ricardo Descalzi

Ricardo Descalzi del Castillo (Riobamba, September 22, 1912 – Riobamba, November 29, 1990) was an Ecuadorian novelist, historian, playwright, short story writer, translator, literary critic, university professor and medical doctor. In 1928, he founded the magazine Surcos with his Mejía National Institute classmates José Alfredo Llerena and Arturo Meneses. After graduating from high school in 1932, he published “Ghismondo,” a 100-page novel based on his experiences as a student. He also wrote the novel “Saloya” (1962), a short story collection “Los murmullos de Dios” (1959), and the stage plays “Los Caminos Blancos” (1939), “En el horizonte se alzó la niebla” (1961), and “El huasipungo de Andrés Chiliquinga” (1981). His six-volume “Historia crítica del teatro ecuatoriano” is perhaps his most important work (1968). Among his translations is “Poemas” (1969), a French-to-Spanish translation of poems by Nobel laureate Jean Poilvet Le Guenn. The Tobar Prize was bestowed upon him by the municipality of Quito in 1968. He was a member of the House of Ecuadorian Culture, the National Academy of History, and the Bolivarian Society of Quito, where he served as its vice president.

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Edwin Ulloa Arellano

Edwin Ulloa Arellano (Riobamba, 1947) is an Ecuadorian poet, novelist, short story writer, journalist, psychologist and retired university professor. Ulloa has lived in Guayaquil since adolescence. He was an official of the House of Ecuadorian Culture in Guayaquil. His books include Sobre una tumba una rumba (1992, short stories), La sombra de tu sonrisa (2014, poetry), Polvo de Ángel (2010, novel). He has worked as the general editor of the ANDES State News Agency, Diario Expreso, and La Otra Magazine, and as the director of the newspaper El Telégrafo.

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Benigna Dávalos

Benigna Dávalos Villavicencio (Riobamba, circa 1910 – Quito, circa 1960) was an Ecuadorian poet and composer; her most recognized work is the text for the pasillo song “Ángel de Luz,” which is also known in Peru under the name “Rayo de Luz,” popularized by the duo Las Limeñitas. In August 2018, the Museum of the Ecuadorian Pasillo was created, where a statue of Benigna Dávalos lies among the statues of 4 other legendary pasillo composers.

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Euler Granda

Euler Granda (Riobamba, June 7, 1935 — Portoviejo, February 22, 2018) was an Ecuadorian poet, writer, and psychiatrist. In the second half of the 1950s, he was a member of the poetic group Club 7. Later, in 1962, he was one of the founding members of the Tzántzico group in Quito, which urged a fundamental transformation in Ecuador’s approach to literature and culture. Granda is the author of 17 books of poetry. Among the honors he has received are: two first-place finishes in the Ismael Pérez Pazmio National Poetry Contest (1961 and 1996), the Jorge Carrera Andrade Municipal Poetry Prize (1988), and the Jorge Luis Borges Poetry Prize. He was also a judge for the Casa de las Américas Award (Havana, Cuba). In 2009 he was awarded the Eugenio Espejo Prize, Ecuador’s highest literary honor.

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Juan de Velasco

Juan de Velasco y Pérez Petroche (Riobamba, January 6, 1727 – Faenza, Italy, June 29, 1792) was an influential 18th-century Jesuit priest, historian, and professor of philosophy and theology from the Royal Audience of Quito. He dedicated his life to intellectual pursuits and made significant contributions to various fields of study. Velasco’s most notable work, “Historia del Reino de Quito,” sheds light on the existence of a pre-Inca kingdom in Ecuador, leaving a lasting impact on the country’s historical narrative. His scholarly endeavors extended beyond history, as he also wrote textbooks on physics and anthologies of poetry. Velasco’s versatile expertise and commitment to knowledge continue to be admired, making him a celebrated figure in Ecuadorian intellectual and cultural heritage.

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Luis Alberto Costales

Luis Alberto Costales Cazar (Riobamba, December 24, 1926 – Riobamba, February 1, 2006) was an Ecuadorian politician, poet, writer, historian, teacher and farmer. His works include “Bucólicas y Una Vida Simple,” “Sobre el Pomo de la Tierra,” “Exiliado en el verso” and “Rutas de Sombra y de Sol.” He co-founded the Democratic Left Party.

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