Skip to main content

Kristi Larkin Havens, lecturer and administrator in the Department of English, passed away April 29.


Havens enrolled in the department as a master’s student in 1987. She completed her doctorate in 1996 and joined the department as a lecturer the same year. In 2007 she was promoted to assistant director of undergraduate studies. Prominent among her many contributions are her award-winning work as an advisor and as coordinator of the department’s website.

Havens was an effective teacher and a great supporter of the arts. She taught a popular class on punk rock and served on the board of Sundress Academy for the Arts, where she recruited participants in a writing retreat for survivors of sexual assault. She was also one of the coordinators for the Knoxville Girls Rock Camp, an organization dedicated to fostering inclusivity and creativity. For her, the arts were a natural venue for pursuing the aims of social justice.

“Kristi’s service to the department has been long and varied. She is woven into the fabric of our culture and will be deeply missed,” said Allen Dunn, head of the Department of English.

A celebration of her life will be held at a later date.