County of San Mateo Seeks Poet Laureate To Fill 2 Year Term

South San Francisco, CA   July 7, 2016  Submitted by John Kevranian

APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS (For questions, please call Karina Labrenz at (650) 312-8822 or email at

Application Period Opens: June 20, 2016 Application Deadline: August 1, 2016, at 5:00 p.m.

On April 23, 2013, The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors approved the establishment of the post of San Mateo County Poet Laureate to elevate poetry into the consciousness of San Mateo County residents and to help celebrate the literary arts.

The Poet Laureate will be a two-year position which includes a $5000 yearly honorarium. During that term, the Poet Laureate will act as ambassador and advocate for poetry, literature and the arts. It is expected that the Poet Laureate will contribute to San Mateo County’s poetry and literary legacy through public readings and participation in civic events. The Poet Laureate will also propose and lead a community project.


  • š  The Poet Laureate must be 18 years or older.
  • š  The Poet Laureate will be available to serve a two-year term, commencing in January 2017.
  • š  The Poet Laureate will be a San Mateo County resident of at least three years who has been

    published or recognized for poetry and literary contributions. The number and quality of published

    works will be taken into account in our selection process.

  • š  The Poet Laureate will have demonstrated a commitment to and passion for poetry and embrace

    the opportunity to engage in community service to make poetry more accessible and available.

  • š  The Poet Laureate will articulate a willingness to serve as an ambassador for San Mateo County and

    to engage residents in poetry at public events through public readings, workshops, visiting schools

    and other means.

  • š  The Poet Laureate will be available to travel throughout San Mateo County.


  • š  The Poet Laureate will represent San Mateo County and the art of poetry through outreach activities related to poetry.
  • š  The Poet Laureate will present appropriate works at a minimum of four selected County-sponsored events during each year, including events involving schools and youth.
  • š  The Poet Laureate will open the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors meetings with a poem every quarter.
  • š  The Poet Laureate will propose and lead a community project throughout their term.
 Applications will be considered for the honorary post of San Mateo County Poet Laureate. Please submit the following information, along with supporting documents. The deadline for receipt of the application packet and supporting documents is by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, August 1, 2016


Application Cover Page

Complete and submit the Application Cover Page, including your signature and date.

Resume and Eligibility

Submit a current resume of professional activities and achievements, including significant awards and training, selected exhibitions, performances, presentations and/or publications. Poets must provide a list of publications indicating a minimum of five published works

Project Description

One of the duties (noted on the previous page) of the San Mateo County Poet Laureate is to undertake a project throughout San Mateo County that will make poetry more available and accessible to people in their everyday lives.

Our current Poet Laureate Caroline Goodwin created the highly successful “Poetry Is” campaign for her term of office. Together with the libraries and San Mateo County, various contests and events were hosted throughout the past two years to highlight this campaign including “Poetry is Love”, “Poetry is Family”, “Poetry is Heritage”, “Poetry is Autumn” and the upcoming “Poetry is Nature.”

In no more than two pages or 500 words describe what type of project(s) you would like to complete as Poet Laureate. How would the nature and significance of your approach to poetry impact or involve the community? What would be your timeline and what sorts of resources or collaborations would you be seeking?

Artistic Quality and Work Samples

Include with your application a Submission List of up to 10 pages of poetry (not including the Submission List) that represent your best artistic achievements, and include on each page, the title of the poem and your name. Submit only copies please – Poet Laureate Advisory Committee will review but not return your submissions.


_____ Application Form with signature verifying eligibility _____ Current Resume
_____ Project Description
_____ List of publication credits

_____ Submission of up to 10 pages of original poetry _____ Letter(s) of Recommendation (optional)
_____ Reviews, articles, publications (optional)

Applications are due on Monday August 1, 2016, at 5:00 p.m. with no exceptions.

Applications may be submitted either by mail or by email.
Send to: San Mateo County Poet Laureate Advisory Committee

c/o Karina Labrenz
San Mateo County Libraries 125 Lessingia Court
San Mateo, CA 94402

Or email to:

For questions, please call Karina Labrenz at (650) 312-8822.

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