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Madison, Wisconsin boasts of having been one of the first cities in our nation to have a poet laureate. John Tuschen was appointed by Paul Soglin in 1977. Our current Poets Laureate, Sarah Busse and Wendy Vardaman, have almost completed four years of service and will soon pass the torch. In January of 2016 Mayor Soglin will once again appoint a Madison Poet Laureate.
Any Poet that wishes to self-nominate or any organization or member of the community that wishes to nominate a poet for the position of Madison’s Fifth Poet Laureate may submit documents for consideration.
The specific criteria for the appointment of the Poet Laureate are based on her/his involvement and commitment to the community, literary excellence and continued pursuit of the craft. During their service Poet Laureates generously share their love of poetry with our city, create occasional poems for specific civic events, and they participate in and help sustain poetry programs for the City of Madison.