And so, it happened – Juan Felipe Herrera, a Latin author and spoken-word artist, has been crowned America’s poet laureate.

His career began with the 1974 publication of “Rebozos of Love,” and led to his appointment as poet laureate of California from 2012 to 2014, and the Library of Congress’ 21st Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry, for 2015-2016.

A son of Mexican immigrants, Herrera spent most of his life living from tents to trailers, until, education freed him.  He graduated from UCLA and Stanford. His poetry collections, novels in verse and numerous children’s books have painted the Mexican-American experience across California.

He served a two-year stint as California’s poet laureate, from 2012 to 2014. Also in his list of accolades Herrera served as the chair of the Chicano and Latin American Studies Department at California State University, Chair in the Creative Writing Department at the University of California, Riverside; and, presently, he’s a visiting professor in the Department of American Ethnic Studies at the University of Washington, Seattle, said the Latin Post.

 

– Hurtjohn