Academy of American Poets, Inc.

New York, NY   |  https://poets.org/

Mission

The Academy of American Poets' mission is to support American poets at all stages of their careers and to foster the appreciation of contemporary poetry.

Ruling year info

1936

President & Executive Director

Jennifer Benka

Main address

75 Maiden Lane Suite 901

New York, NY 10038 USA

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EIN

13-1879953

NTEE code info

Arts Service Activities/Organizations (A90)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Poets.org

An online archive of poems, poets biographies, K-12 lesson plans, and essays about poetry, as well as the online information hub for National Poetry Month and Poem in Your Pocket Day.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Poem-a-day is the original and only daily digital poetry series featuring over 200 new, previously unpublished poems by today’s talented poets each year. On weekdays, poems are accompanied by exclusive commentary by the poets. The series highlights classic poems on weekends. Launched in 2006, Poem-a-Day is now distributed via email, web, and social media to 350,000+ readers free of charge and is available for syndication.

Population(s) Served
Adults

National Poetry Month was inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996. Over the years, it has become the largest literary celebration in the world with schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets celebrating poetry’s vital place in our culture.

Population(s) Served
Adults

The Academy of American Poets awards a suite of eight major awards that range from a first-book prize to a lifetime-achievement award—and nearly two hundred College Prizes at schools across the country. It also provides fellowships to poets serving as state and local poets laureate.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Winner of the 2018 Innovations in Reading Prize given by the National Book Foundation, Teach This Poem is produced for K-12 educators and features one poem a week, accompanied by interdisciplinary resources and activities designed to help teachers quickly and easily bring poetry into the classroom.

Population(s) Served
Adults

An annual reading that celebrates the influence of poetry on leaders working in other disciplines, celebrating the art form from the reader's perspective.

Population(s) Served
Adults

This biannual publication is produced for the members of the Academy of American Poets and features poems, book reviews, essays by and about poets, as well as information about upcoming programs.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Where we work

Awards

Innovations in Reading Prize 2018

National Book Foundation

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

We have three primary goals: to support poets; to encourage the appreciation and reading of American poetry past and present; and to assist teachers in incorporating poetry into their lessons and introducing poetry to their students.

To achieve our goals we award funds to poets through our prize program, and we publish and promote poets on Poets.org, in Poem-a-Day, in American Poets magazine, and at live events and on our social media channels. To encourage the appreciation and reading of American poetry, we make more than 10,000 poems available to more than 30 million readers on Poets.org, we distribute poems every morning to more than 200,000 email subscribers through Poem-a-Day. And, we organize National Poetry Month and Poem in Your Pocket Day, which reach another 10 million individuals. To assist teachers, we produce a weekly Teach This Poem series that serves a growing audience of more than 30,000 K-12 educators. We also make lesson plans and other resources for teachers available on Poets.org.

Almost all of the prizes we offer poets are endowed and so will exist in perpetuity. The majority of our publications and other promotion of poets is in the digital space, making this work efficient and cost-effective. To assist in our producing excellent educator resources we added an Educator in Residence. The majority of staff members have MFA degrees in poetry and we also benefit from the guidance of a Board of Chancellors, which is composed of fifteen esteemed poets. Finally, we have an active Board of Directors who provide oversight, and assist in raising funds.

In the past year we re-launched Poets.org, surpassed 200,000 subscribers to Poem-a-Day, received the Innovations in Reading Prize from the National Book Foundation for Teach This Poem, and raised $1.2 million to support poets laureate at the state and local level. On our horizon is continuing to help build the Poetry Coalition, an alliance of more than 20 nonprofit organizations in the U.S. dedicated to poetry. And, exploring brand extensions of Poem-a-Day.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    Poets, readers, K-12 teachers, members.

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Suggestion box/email,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    Our staff, Our board,

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We act on the feedback we receive,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

Financials

Academy of American Poets, Inc.
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Academy of American Poets, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 08/17/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Michael Jacobs

ABRAMS Books

Jamaica Kincaid

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Not applicable
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Not applicable
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Not applicable

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 8/17/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or other sexual orientations in the LGBTQIA+ community
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 08/17/2021

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.