City of Logan appoints new Poet Laureate

Shanan Ballam has been named as Poet Laureate for the City of Logan, according to Mayor Holly Daines.

Ballam will serve as the city’s official ambassador of literary culture when she begins her five-year term on August 20, 2019.

“One of the greatest pleasures of my life is teaching poetry and watching writers develop and succeed,” Ballam said. “As Logan City Poet Laureate, I will coordinate with the Logan Library to teach free poetry writing workshops for our community which will be open to writers of all skill levels.”

According to a Logan City press release, Ballam teaches poetry writing, fiction writing, and composition as a Senior Lecturer in the Utah State University English Department. She has an MFA in poetry writing from the University of Nebraska Omaha, an MS in English from Utah State University, and a BS in English from Utah State University. She is the author of several poetry collections which have been semi-finalists for multiple awards.

Her new poetry collection, Inside the Animal: The Collected Red Riding Hood Poems, will be published by Main Street Rag in May 2019.

Ballam will succeed Star Coulbrooke, who became poet laureate in 2015. Throughout her time, Coulbrooke shared poems at Municipal Council meetings, hosted poetry walkabouts and visited numerous schools.

In addition to the Mayor’s announcement of Ballam’s appointment, everyone is encouraged to celebrate May Swenson Day (May 28th) by reading her poetry, viewing the displays about her life and work in the Logan Library and the Merrill-Cazier Library, or following the May Swenson Poetry Path, which leads to local landmarks connected with her life.

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