The City of San Antonio Opens Nominations for the Next Poet Laureate

click to enlarge Octavio Quintanilla, current San Antonio Poet Laureate - JADE ESTEBAN ESTRADA
Jade Esteban Estrada
Octavio Quintanilla, current San Antonio Poet Laureate
It's not just the presidential race that's heating up for 2020. The City of San Antonio has just announced that nominations are open for the next poet laureate, who will follow in the footsteps of Octavio Quintanilla, the position's current occupant.

The city's poet laureate serve a two-year term with a $3,500 honorarium per year. Charged with the lofty goal of promoting the literary arts in San Antonio, the poet laureate develops and promotes poetry-themed events and programs in tandem with local organizations as well as the city's Department of Arts and Culture. 

Carmen Tafolla, the Alamo City's first poet laureate, was appointed by then-mayor and now-Democratic presidential candidate Julián Castro in 2012. Since Tafolla's term, Laurie Ann Guerrero, Jenny Browne and Octavio Quintanilla have served served as Head Poet in Charge.

Nominations for the poet laureate are submitted by San Anto citizens for review by a panel of writers and scholars from around the country, who review the nominees' credentials and recommend a candidate, who is then appointed by the mayor.

“With cities across the country convening in San Antonio this week for the National League of Cities Conference, this is a perfect time to showcase how our city is a leader in arts and culture," Mayor Ron Nirenberg said in a statement.

“Our Poet Laureate Program is one of many ways our city places significant importance and value on artistic expression in telling the story of our past, present and future.”

The poet laureate nomination form and guidelines can be found on the City of San Antonio website.

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