We’re thrilled to share today’s news that Academy of American Poets Chancellor Juan Felipe Herrera is the new Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress. Herrera is the first Mexican American poet to hold the position.
“Juan Felipe is someone who believes that poetry can make a difference in people’s lives and communities,” said executive director Jennifer Benka in a Washington Post article announcing the news. “He will bring an enthusiasm and electricity to the role of poet laureate that is sure to spark new and wider interest in the art form among people of all ages.”
Herrera was elected a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets in 2011. Chancellorship is an honorary distinction. Chancellors provide artistic guidance, champion our programs and poetry, and judge our largest prizes for poets, including our $100,000 Wallace Stevens Award.
Born in Fowler, California, on December 27, 1948, Juan Felipe Herrera is the author of numerous poetry collections and other works that include video, photography, theater, prose, and performance, making him a leading voice on the Mexican American and indigenous experience. Read more about his life and work, watch exclusive video of the poet performing his work, and more.