Poet Laureate

Accepting Applications and Nominations

We are accepting applications and nominations for our next Poet Laureate now through December 31st, 2023. Submit your Poet Laureate Application or Nomination now for consideration.

On July 13, 1993, by Resolution No. 93-412, the City Council established a non-salaried honorary position to be known as "The Poet Laureate of the City of Modesto".  The Culture Commission has the responsibility for nominating and recommending appointments to the Poet Laureate position.  The City Council approves the appointment.  The purpose of a Poet Laureate is to present original poems at various official occasions.  The term is for two years with the possibility of serving one additional term.

City of Modesto Poet Laureates

Name Term
Salvatore Salerno 2020-Present
Stella Beratlis 2016-2020
Gillian Wegener 2012-2016
Ed Bearden 2008-2012
Sam Pierstoff 2004-2008
Debee Loyd 2000-2004
Arlene Silva Mattos 1996-2000
Jeannette Gould Maino 1994-1996

A Love Letter to Stanislaus County

By Sam Pierstoff
Poet Laureate 2004-2008

Video created by Ben Hoover
Uploaded by the Stanislaus Community Foundation