The Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy (OACCE) is pleased to announce the establishment of Philadelphia’s first Youth Poet Laureate.  The OACCE has instituted this position in order to promote interest in poetry throughout the city and to give one young person an opportunity to develop his or her talents in poetry.  This individual will also promote poetry through their work with Philadelphia’s Poet Laureate, Sonia Sanchez, and appearances in their capacity as Youth Poet Laureate.  The application process is open to any youth residing in Philadelphia and attending high school at the time of application.  More details on eligibility and the application process can be found in the Guidelines available below.

We are strongly encouraging schools, community organizations, and other organizations that work with children to become involved in the process and select nominees to represent them in the larger Youth Poet Laureate selection process; however, a young person may also be nominated by an adult who is familiar with them and their work and willing to be contacted as part of the Youth Poet Laureate selection process.  Applications are due to be submitted online or postmarked to the OACCE by October 19, 2012.

The Youth Poet Laureate position has been crafted by the Poet Laureate Governing Committee and Sonia Sanchez.  Members of the Poet Laureate Governing Committee include its Chair, Gary Steuer, Chief Cultural Officer of the OACCE; Siobhan Reardon, President and Director of the Free Library of Philadelphia; Al Filreis, Faculty Director of Kelly Writers House at the University of Pennsylvania; Beth Feldman Brandt, poet and Executive Director of the Stockton Rush Bartol Foundation; and Greg Corbin, Founder and Executive Director, Philadelphia Youth Poetry Movement.

For more information, go to