Call for Nominations: California Arts Council Seeks Recommendations for State Poet Laureate | Leonardo/ISASTwith Arizona State University

Call for Nominations: California Arts Council Seeks Recommendations for State Poet Laureate

Dates or Deadline: 
5 January 2022 to 28 January 2022
Organized by: 
California Arts Council
Valencia, CA
United States

The California Arts Council is designated to recommend individuals to the Governor of California for the position of California Poet Laureate. The California Poet Laureate shall be appointed by the Governor.  This appointment requires Senate confirmation.

Selection criteria and nomination requirements are listed below.

Duties of the Poet Laureate

The role of the California Poet Laureate is to spread the art of poetry and encourage literacy and learning in California.

The California Poet Laureate must:

  • Provide a minimum of six public readings in urban and rural settings across California for the purpose of educating community, business, and state leaders about the value and importance of poetry and creative expression; and
  • Undertake a significant cultural project that extends through a two-year term. One of the goals of this project must be to bring the poetic arts to students who might otherwise have little opportunity to be exposed to poetry.

The California Poet Laureate may, and is encouraged to:

  • Coordinate their project with any similar project being undertaken by the current United States Poet Laureate, and any other reasonable activities as agreed to mutually by the California Poet Laureate and the California Arts Council.

  • Coordinate their specific project with any similar project being undertaken by the California Youth Poet Laureate.

Review Criteria for Poet Laureate Selection

The poet should be:

  • recognized for excellence of their work;
  • known for a significant body of published work;
  • widely considered to be a poet of stature; and
  • willing to undertake a specific project during their term.

How to Nominate

Nominations must be submitted via email to

Nominations must contain the following:

  • A cover letter from the nominating organization or individual describing the qualifications of the nominating organization or individual.
  • The name and biography of the poet to be nominated (300 words maximum). Note: A competitive biography would include a summary of significant awards and published literary works.
  • A link to a complete vita and/or website if available.
  • A summary of no more than a half-page indicating why the nominating organization or individual considers the poet's work to be of the highest quality and representative of the State of California.
  • Complete contact information for the nominated poet, including the following:
    • Name
    • Address
    • Email
    • Website, if available
    • Phone
    • Mobile phone
  • Confirmation from the nominating organization or individual that the poet has reviewed the job description in the California Government Code (Title 2, Div. 1, Chapter 9.5) and agrees to the nomination.
  • Three (3) poems by the nominated poet typed on 8 ½" x 11" papers, single-sided.
  • A complete list and copies (if available) of all published literary works.


  • Nominations shall be limited to current residents of California.
  • Nominees must have lived in California for at least 10 years.
  • Nominations may come from people in the field of literature (poets may also self-nominate).

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