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State and National Finals

The National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation are pleased to share that Mia Ronn, a junior at the Archer School for Girls in Los Angeles, California, is the 2022 Poetry Out Loud™ National Champion. With moving recitations of poetry by Kara Jackson, Victor Hernández Cruz, and Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib, Ronn was named champion during last night’s national finals, which took place virtually and was hosted by author, speaker, and educator Kwame Alexander. 

As National Champion, Ronn will receive a prize of $20,000. The second-place winner is Aidyn Lorin Jai Reid, a senior at Fountain Valley School of Colorado in Colorado Springs, Colorado, who will receive a $10,000 prize. The third-place winner is Oscar Manuel Landa Samano, a senior at Coconino High School in Flagstaff, Arizona, who will receive a $5,000 prize. The other six national finalists will each receive a $1,000 prize. The schools of each of the top nine finalists will receive $500 to purchase poetry materials. The Poetry Foundation provides and administers all aspects of the monetary prizes awarded for Poetry Out Loud. The Poetry Out Loud National Semifinals and Finals are administered by Mid Atlantic Arts.

When asked what drew her interest in Poetry Out Loud, Ronn said: “Performing a piece of writing can kind of connect you to it, to the text and to the poet themselves. You just can’t get the same understanding from reading a poem, no matter how many times you do, as you can from when you bring it to life.” 

This is the 17th year that the National Endowment for the Arts and Poetry Foundation have partnered with the state and jurisdictional arts agencies to support Poetry Out Loud, a program that encourages the nation’s youth to learn about great poetry—both classic and contemporary—through memorization and recitation. 

Photos and videos of the finalists are available for media use. To request an interview with Mia Ronn or any of the national finalists, please email Liz Auclair at mailto:auclaire@arts.gov.

State Finals

Find your state’s Poetry Out Loud coordinator here.

State/Territory Date Winner & School/Org
Alabama Feb 21 Abigail Kulkarni, James Clemons HS
Alaska Mar 11 Nikolai Chavez, Whitestone HS
American Samoa Mar 11 Audrey Rose Sevaaetasi, Samoana HS
Arizona Mar 15 Oscar Landa Samano, Coconino HS
Arkansas Mar 12 Lia Lawson, Wonderview HS
California Mar 16 Mia Ronn, The Archer School for Girls
Colorado Mar 2 Aidyn Reid, Fountain Valley School
Connecticut Mar 5 William Stammer, Weston HS
Delaware Mar 10 Natalie Kim Ramos, St. Mark’s HS
District of Columbia Mar 12 Warwick Lloyd, St. Anselm’s Abbey School
Florida Mar 5 Niveah Glover, Jacksonville Arts & Music School
Georgia Mar 13 Amaya McGee, DeKalb School of the Arts
Guam Mar 11 Zekiya Mapilisan, Okkodo HS
Hawaii Mar 9 Tasha Kanoa, Mid-Pacific School of the Arts
Idaho Mar 12 Seth Hill, Classical Christian Academy
Illinois Mar 7 Cole Delaney, Franklin HS
Indiana Mar 9 Lila Ward, Columbia City HS, Eagle Tech Academy
Iowa Mar 6 Landon Stanley, Marshalltown HS
Kansas Mar 5 Allie Cloyd, Manhattan HS
Kentucky Mar 1 Lupita Diaz, Beechwood HS
Louisiana Mar 12 Jacob Simmons, Covington HS
Maine Mar 7 Sofia Lantratova, George Stevens Academy
Maryland Mar 10 Harrison Lynch, The King’s Christian Academy
Massachusetts Mar 13 Ava Beringer, Masconomet Regional HS
Michigan Mar 3-4 Gabriel Blaikie, Interlochen Arts Academy
Minnesota Feb 28 Stella Wright, Armstrong HS
Mississippi Mar 3 Noble Wilkinson, Jackson Preparatory School
Missouri Mar 10 Ava Maupin, School of the Osage HS
Montana Mar 5 Rachel Campbell, Chrysalis School
Nebraska Mar 11 Alexandra Rose Zaleski, Skutt Catholic HS
Nevada Mar 8 Eakjot Sekhon, Robert McQueen HS
New Hampshire Mar 11 Emily Matos, Kingswood Regional HS
New Jersey Mar 2 Italy Whitehead, Thomas Jefferson Arts Academy
New Mexico Mar 6 Analisa Iberra, La Cueva HS
New York Mar 12 Pamela White, Bethlehem Central HS
North Carolina Feb 26 Gabriella Burwell, Knightdale HS
North Dakota Feb 28 Mya Tena, Bismarck HS
Ohio Mar 4 Pius Edzie, St Francis De Sales HS
Oklahoma Mar 8 Ashlyn Sears, Bethany HS
Oregon Mar 11 Trayshun Holmes-Gournaris, Oregon School for the Deaf
Pennsylvania Mar 14 Mario Grugan, Tyrone Area HS
Puerto Rico Mar 11 Victoria Monteagudo-Santos, TASIS
Rhode Island Mar 6 Mariama Bandabaila, Classical HS
South Carolina Mar 5 Emily Allison, Fine Arts Center of Greenville
South Dakota Mar 14 Hannah Dayaget, Washington HS
Tennessee Mar 4-5 Kendall Grimes, Battleground Academy
Texas Mar 10 Ava Shipp, The Hockaday School
Utah Mar 9 Aeva Dye, Dixie HS
Vermont Mar 14 Gianna Morin, South Burlington Union HS
Virgin Islands Mar 12 Makeda-Elizabeth Cabey, All Saints Cathedral School
Virginia Mar 11 Katharina Ravichandran, Albermarle HS
Washington Mar 12 Lucy Shainin, Anacortes HS
West Virginia Mar 11-12 Morgan Sprouse, Bridgeport HS
Wisconsin Mar 5 Jess Davis, Altoona HS
Wyoming Mar 7 Bailee Vargas, Freemont County Homeschool Group