Humanities Nebraska, the Nebraska Arts Council, and the Nebraska Library Commission are seeking nominations for the next Nebraska State Poet. This designation recognizes and honors a Nebraska poet of exceptional talent and accomplishment. Nominations must be submitted online no later than midnight, CST, on August 1, 2018.
Nominations may be made by any organization or individual in the state of Nebraska. To be considered, nominees must consent to the nomination. All nominations will be reviewed by the State Poet Selection Committee, which is made up of five individuals who are established members of Nebraska’s literary, cultural, education and academic communities. After the committee selects finalists, the governor will make the final selection.
State Poet nominations will be collected and reviewed online only. The first step is to contact
firstname.lastname@example.org to verify if the poet in question has been nominated already. The
remainder of the application is completed using the Nebraska Arts Council’s SlideRoom online
application site: https://nebraska.slideroom.com/#/permalink/program/42795 . The site includes
complete instructions for submitting application materials.
The Nebraska State Poet will be chosen based on artistic excellence, exemplary professionalism
demonstrated by significant publications and special honors, an established history of community
service in the advancement of poetry in Nebraska, and the ability to present poetry and interact
effectively with a public audience. In addition, the State Poet must be a legal, full-time resident for at least three years prior to the application deadline and must maintain Nebraska residence during his or her full term of office.
Once selected, the Nebraska State Poet will serve a five-year renewable term as an advocate for
poetry, literacy, and literature in Nebraska. Duties include giving public presentations and readings,
leading workshops and discussions, and providing other outreach in schools, libraries, literary
festivals, and various venues in rural and urban communities throughout the state. To accomplish
this, the State Poet will join the Nebraska Arts Council’s Nebraska Touring Program and the
Humanities Nebraska Speakers Bureau.
The position of Nebraska Poet Laureate was established in 1921 when John G. Neihardt was
appointed by the Legislature. In 1982, William Kloefkorn was appointed Nebraska State Poet by
Governor Charles Thone. Kloefkorn served as State Poet for more than 25 years, until his death
in May 2011. In January 2013, Governor Dave Heineman appointed Twyla M. Hansen as Nebraska
State Poet. Her service to the state ends at the end of 2018.
For more information about the Nebraska State Poet selection process, visit the Humanities Nebraska website at www.humanitiesnebraska.org and click on the rotating banner marked Nebraska State Poet.
Humanities Nebraska inspires and enriches personal and public life by delivering opportunities to
engage thoughtfully with history and culture. A non-profit organization, Humanities Nebraska is funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Nebraska Cultural Endowment, an appropriation from the Nebraska Legislature, and through private support from generous individual and organizational donors. Visit humanitiesnebraska.org to learn more about
HN’s programs and grant opportunities.