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Santa Clara County in Poetry 2009-2011

On November 18, 2008, the Board of Supervisors approved the creation of an honorary post of Santa Clara County Poet Laureate and directed administration to work with Arts Council of Silicon Valley and Santa Clara County Library to develop a process to select a nominee for Board appointment to the post, and to develop an agreement with the selected poet.
Nils Peterson
On March 24, 2009, the County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors appointed Nils Peterson to the honorary post of Santa Clara County Poet Laureate. Peterson was recommended to the Board following the call for applications, and a two step review process organized by the County and Arts Council Silicon Valley.
Kniss with Carlos reading poem


In April 2009 during National Poetry Month, Santa Clara County Poet Laureate Nils Peterson challenged residents to participate in an exercise to create the first Santa Clara County poem. There were more than 500 entries. At a news conference in June 2009, Supervisor Liz Kniss unveiled the 100 line poem authored by residents and arranged by Peterson. The poem is entitled A Family Album Santa Clara County, 2009


30 winners of the April Poetry Contest at a poem reading ceremony 30 POEMS IN 30 DAY

For National Poetry Month in April 2010, Santa Clara County’s Poet Laureate Nils Peterson challenged residents to create poems that celebrate what they observe in day-to-day life and the variety of experiences in the county. The Poet Laureate received 275 submissions, and selected 30, one for each day of April. The 30 Poems was posted on Nils Peterson’s poetry site, one on each day of April. Peterson, along with Supervisor Liz Kniss, recognized the 30 winners of the April Poetry Contest at a poem reading ceremony. The winners presented their poems to the public and the top nine winners received $25 or $50 awards.
Nils Peterson


In January 2011, Poet Laureate Nils Peterson invited county residents to engage in poetry by writing “haiku-ish” poems about what they observe day to day in the county. Peterson selected the best poems and posted them online. This was the last call from the County’s first Poet Laureate who was appointed in March 2009 and finished his term in March 2011. At the “Poet Laureate’s Last Call” on March 30, the community gathered to honor Peterson, including celebratory remarks from the Board of Supervisors and Arts Council Silicon Valley. The event included readings from “haiku-ish” poets and a reception.


Last updated: 6/22/2017 1:08 PM