We are delighted to welcome the newest member of the OPA Board of Directors, Efraín Díaz-Horna. He will serve the remainder of the term of Rayn Roberts, who has resigned. That term expires in October 2023, when Efraín will be eligible to run for a full term.
Efraín is active in Oregon’s Hispanic poetry community, writing masterful poetry in both English and Spanish.
He was born in Talara, Peru, the oldest of five children. He spent most of his childhood in the metropolitan city of Lima, where he attended Santa Rosa de Lima-Maryknoll grade and high schools. He was awarded a full scholarship to study at Mt. Angel College in Oregon, where he received his bachelor’s degree in Sociology. He then returned to Peru, where he worked in the land reform program. Two and a half years later, Efraín returned to the United States and completed two graduate degrees at the University of Wisconsin, one in Social Work and another in Public Policy and Public Administration.
For 25 years, Efraín worked for the state of Oregon and Multnomah County. Many of those years were spent as an administrator for the Department of Aging and Disability Services. In March of 2001, Efrain took early retirement to spend more time with his family and to focus on his writing, art, and volunteering. Upon his leaving, one of his employees described Efraín as “a legend in our midst: Philosopher, teacher, artist, poet, director—a true Renaissance Man.”
Efraín is married to Kathleen C. Díaz (Zollner) and has two sons and five grandchildren. In 2017, he and his wife celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary.
At present Efraín, in addition to volunteering, gives presentations on a variety of subjects, ranging from Hispanic issues to magical realism in Latin American literature. Efraín has been drawing, painting, and writing since he was a child. He has exhibited his art in Oregon, Mexico, Russia, and Peru.
His poetry has been published in Expreso, The Oregonian, The Hispanic News, The National Catholic Reporter, and several newsletters. He is the author of the following poetry books The Many Faces of Love (1983); Aire, agua y cenizas (2011); Cuatro poemas (2011); The Anvil of God (2011); The Life of Oceans (2014); 1ra Antología de la poesía oregoniana (2018);Relative Poetry (2018), and Cuando llegues al fondo, cava más abajo (2019)—a translation of Kim Stafford’s poetry. Efraín has been a member of the Oregon Council for the Humanities, The Regional Arts and Culture Council, the Oregon United Nations Association, the Silverton Poetry Association, the Oregon Poetry Association, the Instituto de Cultura Oregoniana, and has chaired the Oregon Hispanic Commission.