Dana Gioia

b. 1950
Dana Gioia

It seems almost a requirement for a poet to have an unconventional résumé, but Dana Gioia’s is perhaps notable for being so conventionally unpoetic. A graduate of Stanford Business School, Gioia claims to be “the only person, in history, who went to business school to be a poet.” He later rose to become a vice president at General Foods. Most recently, he served as chairperson of the National Endowment for the Arts from 2003 to 2008. Although Gioia writes in free verse, he is known primarily for his formal work, and has been included in the school of New Formalism, a movement in the 1990s by American poets to bring traditional verse forms back to the fore.

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"I would like to thank the Poetry Out Loud Organization and everyone who made this event possible! It's such an incredible opportunity. I will cherish the memory of this experience forever!"
Austin Gage
2014 WV POL Champion