Joliet West teacher serves in 2020 IL Poet Laureate Search

Joliet West High School teacher Mark Eleveld was selectedto participate in the 2020 Illinois Poet Laureate Search Committee, and they are currently seeking nominations for the next poet to represent the state of Illinois.

Eleveld said, "It’s great working with a diverse set of educators, activists, and poets all interested in finding the next poet to represent the state of Illinois, and it’s also a blast working with Gwendolyn Brooks’ daughter."

With one foot in the contemporary literary scene and the other foot in the classroom, Eleveld shares a unique perspective in the 2020 IL Poet Laureate Search Committee. Eleveld was selected in part due to his expertise in contemporary poetry and his local advocacy in support of starting a new poet laureate search. Eleveld has worked at Joliet West High School since 2000 and teaches philosophy at Lewis University. While at Lewis University, Eleveld also worked extensively with Marc Smith, an influential American poet and founder of the poetry slam movement. In addition, Eleveld has written several poetry anthologies and book reviews. Eleveld is a co-founder of EM Press and programmed the first Poetry Jam at the White House for former President Obama
and Mrs. Obama in 2009.

Eleveld encourages stakeholders throughout the state of Illinois to nominate poets for the
position. Eleveld says, "It’s not a Chicago position. It’s a state of Illinois position. If there are stakeholders in the Will County area who are interested in applying for the position, I would encourage them to do so. There is no age requirement. It would be great to have Will County nominate poets for the position."

Nominations will be accepted beginning July 1, 2020 through August 15, 2020 via email or mail. A
full description of the position and nominating requirements are available on the website of the Illinois Poet Laureate at For more information or questions regarding the Illinois Poet Laureate nomination process and position, please contact: The Governor will announce the selection of the next Illinois Poet Laureate in the Fall of 2020.


via Joliet, IL Patch

July 27, 2020 at 04:14PM

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