Poet Laureate Program

Malibu Poet Laureate

Dr. John Struloeff was appointed the Malibu Poet Laureate by the Malibu City Council on October 12, 2020. Dr. Struloeff serves as the City's third Malibu Poet Laureate who will serve until June 1, 2021. 

Dr. Struloeff is currently the Director of Creative Writing at Pepperdine University and has been involved in the City's Poet Laureate program since its inception. He is the recipient of multiple literary awards, including the Stegner Fellowship from Stanford University, an NEA Literature Fellowship, a Sozopol Fiction Fellowship from the Elizabeth Kostova Foundation (Bulgaria), and the Tennessee Williams Scholarship from the Sewanee Writers' Conference. Additionally, Dr. Struloeff's work has been published in more than 50 literary journals and magazines. 

2019-2020: Ellen Reich was appointed as the Malibu Poet Laureate by the Malibu City Council on March 11, 2019. Mrs. Reich served one year, before her passing in May of 2020.  Her spirit and ideative poetry, along with her relentless devotion to the development of poetry in Malibu made a lasting impression on the community. The City of Malibu and the entire Malibu community mourn the loss of Mrs. Reich. Read the City press release.

This year, the Council recognized Mrs. Reich as the 2020 recipient of the Jake Kuredjian Citizenship Award and has installed a poetry stone, with an inscription of her poem, "Interruption of Bird" at Legacy Park.


Ellen Reich                                 March 28, 2019 - April 1, 2020                               Ricardo Means Ybarra               March 28, 2017 – March 27, 2019

Poetry Programs 
Malibu Poet Laureate Dr. John Struloeff will host three free poetry programs in 2020-2021. Please join him and the Poet Laureate Committee virtually.  All programs begin at 11:00 AM and an RSVP is required by completing the online form linked on the dates below. 
While working with the City's Poet Laureate, the Poet Laureate Committee, have established a variety of poetry programs, arts outreach programs, partnerships and poetry awareness in the Malibu community.  Programs include:
  • Arts and Education Programs 
  • Strictly Poetry Adult Poetry Workshops
  • Pizza and Poetry
  • Call to the Wall, Poetry Summit 
  • Annual Poetry Anthology 
  • Caffeinated Verse Open Mic Poetry Readings 
  • Poetry Stones at Legacy Park 
  • Poetry Readings at Special Events 
  • Partnership programs with Pepperdine University