Wisconsin's Poet Laureate program has been saved by the Madison-based Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters. The organization announced on May 16 that it will steward the program and provide staff support.
The Poet Laureate Commission is part of the governor's office. It was created by Republican Gov. Tommy Thompson in 2000. Gov. Scott Walker plans to pull $2,000 from his office's support of the poet laureate, used for travel expenses.
The program is otherwise self-supporting. The Wisconsin Poet Laureate Fund is an endowment fund within the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region.
"We expect to raise $2,000 and more to support this program," says Academy executive director Margaret Lewis. "It fits nicely with our other programs that highlight the state's best writers."
The current poet laureate is Bruce Dethlefsen, of Westfield.