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Poet Laureate Applications Due January 30

Applications Now Being Accepted for Tacoma Poet Laureate Position


December 28, 2022



Jeff Lueders, Media and Communications, jlueders@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-5152
Maria Lee, Media and Communications, maria.lee@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-2054


Applications Now Being Accepted for Tacoma Poet Laureate Position


TACOMA, Wash. -- The Tacoma Arts Commission is accepting applications for Tacoma Poet Laureate now through 11:59 PM on January 30, 2023. Literary artists who are emerging, professional, or established – producing poetry in any form, genre or style – are encouraged to apply. Writers who work in additional genres whose work intersects with poetry will also be considered. Applicants must be at least 18 years or older, live in Pierce County, and be actively engaged in Tacoma’s creative community.

The individual selected as Tacoma Poet Laureate will hold the title for two years – from May 2023 to April 2025 – and receive a stipend of $4,000. The individual will have access to an additional project budget of up to $1,000 to help implement programming; actively contribute to and advance Tacoma’s literary community in meaningful ways through readings, performances, workshops, presentations, publications and/or special projects – whether in-person or virtually; participate in Tacoma Arts Month each October; and help produce the 2025 ceremony to announce the next Poet Laureate. The individual should actively strive to engage the breadth of Tacoma’s residents, expanding access to the literary arts to underserved/underrepresented audiences. The individual is expected to determine the direction, focus, and appropriate public components for their term of service.


The Tacoma Arts Commission is committed to investing in communities most impacted by racial, social, and economic inequity. Consideration for the Tacoma Poet Laureate position will be prioritized for applicants whose community engagement strategies meet one or more of the following:

  • Primarily give voice to one or more of the following:
    • Racial justice and/or social justice
    • Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) / African, Latinx, Arab, Asian, Native-American (ALAANA) communities
    • Economically or socio-economically marginalized communities
    • LGBTQIA+ communities
    • People with disabilities
  • Address emergent community needs 

Current Tacoma Poet Laureate Lydia K. Valentine will curate and host a poetry event at which the newly selected Poet Laureate will be honored. The event date will be announced in early 2023.


Details about the Tacoma Poet Laureate program, which was founded in 2008 by Urban Grace Church and transitioned to the City of Tacoma’s Arts Program in 2011, are available at cityoftacoma.org/poet. Application details are available at cityoftacoma.org/artsopps.