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San Antonio Is Looking For Its Next Official Wordsmith

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The city's poet-in-chief is charged with promoting poetry and public awareness about the literary arts. 

San Antonio was the first major city in Texas to officially designate a poet laureate, with the appointment of Dr. Carmen Tafolla in 2012. She was succeeded by Laurie Ann Guerrero and the position is currently held by Jenny Browne

A new poet laureate is appointed every two years. Nominations are now open through January 12 for the 2018-2020 term.

Potential laureates are nominated by community members and reviewed by a selection panel of scholarly writers, who then recommend a new poet for the mayor to appoint into the position.

What is the significance of a poet laureate? How does poetry help to promote literacy, encourage artistic expression and preserve local culture?


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Kim Johnson is the producer for Texas Public Radio’s live, call-in show The Source. She is a Trinity University alum with bachelor’s degrees in Communication and Spanish, and a Master of Arts Degree from the School of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin.