At their January 14, 2020, Regular Meeting, the County Commission selected Alachua County’s first Poet Laureate, E. Stanley Richardson.
A Call-to-Artists was advertised, and nine Alachua County poets submitted proposals. The Arts Council of Alachua County reviewed the submittals, and the top three were presented to the Alachua County Commission, who selected E. Stanley Richardson.
Mr. Richardson will be responsible for participating in County events by writing and reading poetry, submit web and social media content to highlight poetry, and mentor youth interested in poetry. He will be paid a $2,000 annual honorarium. Mr. Richardson is the founder of ARTSPEAKSgnv, serves as Director of the North Central Florida/Alachua County Youth Poet Laureate Program, is a published author, and has received numerous poetry awards.
"The Alachua County Commission has a great appreciation for the arts. Our newly established Poet Laureate program, spearheaded by Mr. Richardson, will bring recognition and appreciation to the spoken and written arts,” stated Assistant County Manager Gina Peebles.