In 1965 Annie Edwards, as she was then known, graduated from the University of St Andrews and left her native Scotland to join the faculty of the Purnell School in New Jersey. After completing her PhD at New York University, she taught for ten years at Suffolk University in Boston, and for four years at Mount Holyoke College.
Since 1984, Annie has taught in the English Department at Smith College, where she has specialized in the teaching of writing: Reading and Writing Short Poems, Crafting Creative Nonfiction, Crafting the Memoir. Currently she teaches the Advanced Poetry Writing class. A popular and passionate teacher, she learns much from her students.
With encouragement from English Department colleagues and poetry-lovers from other departments, and crucial assistance from senior Meredith Martin, Annie Boutelle founded the Smith College Poetry Center in 1997.
Boutelle created a plan for a director, student interns, public readings, Q&A’s, a video archive, and outreach to schools. The plan garnered vital support from students and alumnae, and a starter budget was allocated. A Poetry Center Committee was formed, with Boutelle as chair, and participating faculty from various departments.