CITY COUNCIL AGENDA ITEM
Meeting Date: January 11, 2005
Subject/Title: Approve Arts Commission recommendation for Poet Laureate
Prepared by: Rebekah Burr-Siegel, Arts Services Manager
Submitted by: Craig D. Bronzan, Director of Parks and Recreation
Recognize Mary Jane Barnes as the City of Brentwood Poet Laureate Emeritus.
On October 23, 2002, the City of Brentwood Arts Commission unanimously
approved the recommendation of Mary Jane Barnes as the first Poet Laureate
for the City of Brentwood pending final approval from City Council.
On November 12, 2002, the City Council approved the recognition of Mary Jane
Barnes as the first Poet Laureate for the City of Brentwood on the
recommendation of the Brentwood Arts Commission. Her Poet Laureate term
expired on December 31, 2004.
In September the Arts Commission began recruitment for a new Poet Laureate
to replace Ms. Barnes. The submission deadline of October 17, 2004 saw no
submissions. The Arts Commission is recommending to leave the position
vacant and will readdress the issue in 24 months. The Arts Commission and
Literary Arts Committee acknowledge the importance of the literary arts in
Brentwood and Ms. Barnes’ contribution. Simultaneously, the Arts Commission
does not want to ignore the post or have it vacant too long. They will work
diligently to foster the literary arts in our community in order to have
some viable candidates in 24 months in order to continue to advocate for the
appreciation and advancement of the literary arts, particularly poetry.
With approval of this selection, the Arts Commission will invite Mrs. Barnes
to the City Council meeting of January 25, 2005 to be officially recognized.
There is no fiscal impact.