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Emory professor Jericho Brown named Academy of American Poets chancellor
Emory Photo/Video

Jericho Brown, the Emory University Charles Howard Candler Professor of English and Creative Writing, has been named to the Board of Chancellors of the Academy of American Poets.

Chancellors serve six-year terms, acting as artistic advisors and poetry ambassadors in the world as well as judging the academy’s largest legacy prizes for American poets.

Now in its 90th year, the academy has elected more than 125 distinguished poets to the prestigious role, including Elizabeth Alexander, John Ashbery, W.H. Auden, Elizabeth Bishop, Lucille Clifton, Robert Creely, Rita Dove, Louise Glück, Yusef Komunyakaa, Naomi Shihab Nye, Claudia Rankine, Adrienne Rich, Mark Strand and Arthur Sze.

Brown joins Diane Seuss and Afaa Michael Weaver as the three newly named chancellors on the current 15-member board, which also includes poets Natalie Diaz, Nikky Finney, Carolyn Forché, Kimiko Hahn, Joy Harjo, Ilya Kaminsky, Dorianne Laux, Ed Roberson, Patricia Smith, Tracy K. Smith, Natasha Trethewey and Kevin Young.

“Everything we do as an academy is enhanced by the collective wisdom of our chancellors,” Tess O’Dwyer, chair of the Academy’s Board of Directors, says in a press release.

“We’re especially proud that the leadership of the academy reflects such a diverse range of voices,” O’Dwyer adds. “We celebrate the contributions these newly elected chancellors have made to poetry, on and beyond the page, across the nation and the world.”

Brown is the author of three books, including “The Tradition,” the 2019 Pulitzer-Prize winning collection in which he created a new poetic form called the “duplex.”

His debut poetry collection, "Please," won the 2009 American Book Award. His second book, “The New Testament,” won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in 2015.

Brown is the recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award and fellowships from the Academy of American Poets, the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University, among others.

He joined Emory’s faculty in 2012, serving as director of the nationally renowned Creative Writing Program and teaching both first-year seminars and upper-level workshops. This spring, Brown is leading an advanced poetry workshop for undergraduates and serving as interim director of the Creative Writing Program.

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