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Kasich Names Ohio's First Poet Laureate


December 18, 2015 - 2:44 PM


COLUMBUS – Today Gov. John R. Kasich named Dr. Amit Majmudar of Dublin, Ohio as Ohio’s first poet laureate. As a poet, Majmudar has taken a nontraditional path. He is a medical doctor and serves as a diagnostic and nuclear radiologist in Columbus.

During his two-year term, beginning January 1, 2016, Majmudar said he intends to bring an interdisciplinary approach to promoting poetry by establishing a link with the existing, thriving Ohio arts community. Another important component of his outreach will be engaging Ohio high school students through a variety of means to encourage the future of poetry in Ohio.

“Our first poet laureate will bring a unique perspective to this new role and is a powerful example to our young people that regardless of what career path they choose to pursue, they always can tap into their other passions,” said Kasich.  

Throughout his medical career, Majmudar has nurtured his writing as a poet, novelist and essayist. He has published two novels, Partitions in 2009 and The Abundance in 2011. His poetry has appeared in numerous publications including The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, The Atlantic Monthly, Poetry Magazine, The Antioch Review and The Best of the Best American Poetry 1988-2012. His essays and literary criticism have appeared in a number of publications as well, including the New York Times, The Kenyon Review and Poetry Daily. His next collection of poems, Dothead, will be published in March by Alfred A. Knopf.

Majmudar is a graduate of Northeast Ohio Medical University College of Medicine and received his bachelor’s degree in natural sciences from the University of Akron. He currently works for Radiology, Inc. in Columbus.

Legislation creating the position of the state’s official poet was passed in 2014.

Majmudar was recommended for the position by the Ohio Poet Laureate Selection Committee, following an extensive statewide nomination and review process. Members of the selection committee were:

  • Ginger Warner, Ohio Arts Council board vice chairman and selection committee chair
  • Juan Cespedes, Ohio Arts Council board member
  • Neal Zimmers, Ohio Arts Council board member
  • Jon D. Holt, Ohio Arts Council board member
  • Eric H. Kearney, former state senator
  • Steve Abbot, Ohio Poetry Association member
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