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Santa Clara County Poet Laureate Program

Santa Clara County poet laureateThe County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors has appointed David Perez to the honorary post of Santa Clara County Poet Laureate for a two year term (January 14, 2014 - December 21, 2015).  Perez was recommended to the Board following the call for applications, and a two step review process organized by the County and Silicon Valley Creates.

Perez is a poet, writer and educator. He is a professor of English at Ohlone College and has toured throughout the United States and Canada to give readings and book signings. He is the author of Love in a Time of Robot Apocalypse under Write Bloody Publishing, and his poem Surgir appears on the San Jose Mexican Heritage Plaza Founder’s Plaque.

In July 2012, Perez was voted “Best Author in the Bay Area” in the San Francisco Bay Guardian’s annual readers’ poll. He also received the Arts Council Silicon Valley Fellowship for Literary Art in April 2011 for his contribution to empowering Silicon Valley communities through the arts.

Perez will take the two-year post in January 2014.  He is the third poet laureate to be appointed by the County of Santa Clara. Nils Peterson was the County’s first Poet Laureate (2009-2011), and Sally Ashton served as the second Poet Laureate of Santa Clara County (2011-2013).

The poet laureate post was approved by the Board in November 2008 in an effort to elevate poetry in the awareness of Santa Clara County residents and to help celebrate the literary arts. The Poet Laureate acts as a resource for poetry and literary activities to the Santa Clara County Library, represents the County of Santa Clara through outreach related to poetry, conducts presentations of appropriate works at the annual State of the County ceremony and other selected County sponsored events, as well as at activities to celebrate Poetry Month.

The County issued a call for applications on August 9, 2013. The final deadline for applications was September 30, 2013. A Peer Review Panel reviewed applications and rated candidates based on artistic merit, commitment to the community, and alignment of the proposed project with the Poet Laureate mission. Perez emerged as the recommended nominee for appointment by the Board.


Mission

The Santa Clara County Poet Laureate is an honorary post. The nominee is appointed by the County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors. The mission of the Poet Laureate is to:

 

  • Elevate poetry in the awareness of Santa Clara County residents and to help celebrate the literary arts;
  • Serve as an advocate for poetry, literature, and the arts;
  • Lead a community project that makes poetry more accessible; and
  • Contribute to Santa Clara County’s poetry and literary legacy.