. . . about the Judges and Judging

The panel of judges for the 17th Annual Senior Poets Laureate Poetry Competition was comprised of members of the international Bardlets class of award-winning poets from the Cyber-College of Online Poetry, of which Yvonne Nunn, Dean, is their mentor. Participating Bardlets were Noble F. Collins, Phill Doran, Agatha Lai, and Carol Dee Meeks. Other panelists were webmaster Albert L. Baker; Senior Poets Laureate Contest co-founders Vera-Jane Goodin Schultz and Wanda Sue Parrott; 2008 Poster Poet Yvonne Londres; and 2009 Senior Poets Laureate Contest Administrator, Yvonne Nunn.

Some judges served in various roles as the contest proceeded through its numerous rounds between July 1 and August 15, 2009. The judges, some of whom were award- winning poets from previous Senior Poets Laureate competitions, were allowed to enter the contest; however, they were not allowed to judge their own states' entries.

Meet the Judges

Albert L. Baker--Webmaster for Amy Kitchener's Angels Without Wings Foundation, electronic designer of this GOLDEN WORDS online anthology, Al is a retired professional photographer whose occasionally penned poems are short and witty. He lives in Springfield, Missouri. His sign is Aquarius.

Noble F. Collins--He made his debut in the SPL world of competition in 2007 with an Honor Scroll award, a feat repeated in 2008. The Bardlet is a fulltime writer with an Honorable Mention award in the articles category of a recent Writer's Digest Contest. Noble lives in Payson, Arizona. His sun sign: Virgo.

Phill Doran--Born in England, he has lived in South Africa since 1981. Phill works in international commercial trade-relations. As a student of Yvonne Nunn, he joined Agatha “Aggie” Lai in 2008 as the second Bardlet to serve as a Senior Poets Laureate diplomatic ambassador. He lives in Bedfordview. His sign is Pisces.

Agatha Lai--A retired teacher, this Bardlet is active in international online poetry forums, Meeting the Muse Section of Amy Kitchener's Angels Without Wings Fdn., and as an international "Diploet" (diplomatic poet/goodwill ambassador). She lives in Kudat, Sabah, Malaysia. Her sign is Gemini.

Yvonne Londres--Winner of a 2008 Honor Scroll, she served as 2008 SPL Poster Poet. Besides writing poetry and essays, she enters and wins beauty pageants. She sponsored our 1st White Buffalo Award for Native American Poetry. Yvonne lives in San Antonio. Her sign is Cancer.

Carol Dee Meeks--She is a retired bookkeeper and past Senior Poet Laureate of New Mexico who runs, and also wins, many poetry contests. She is one of the original Bardlets mentored by 2009 SPL contest administrator Yvonne Nunn. She recently moved to Tulsa. Carol Dee's sun sign is Leo.

Yvonne Nunn--Dean and founder of the Cyber-College of Online Poetry, Yvonne teaches poets how to write traditional forms of poetry that win contests. Her wins include 2005 Pissonneteer, 2006 Texas Senior Poet Laureate, 2008 Scribe's Scroll and 2009 Honor Scroll awards. Yvonne lives in the ranch country of Hermleigh, Texas. She is a Leo.

Wanda Sue Parrott--Co-founder of the Senior Poets Laureate Contest, she is a retired journalist. Wanda directs Amy Kitchener's Angels Without Wings Fdn., edits its newsletter, and produces SPL's GOLDEN WORDS Anthology. Wanda lives ˝ mile from the Pacific Ocean on California's Monterey Peninsula. She is an Aquarian.

Vera-Jane Goodin Schultz--Co-founder of the Senior Poets Laureate Contest and former publisher of Hodgepodge Literary Journal, Vera-Jane retired from SPL administrative duties six years ago, at which time she married photographer John Schultz. Vera-Jane now serves as consultant/judge. She lives in Springfield, Missouri. She is an Aries.

How the State Winners were Chosen

Two judges and one tie-breaker judge served in the 1st Round of readings of all 712 entries, from which best poems from each state were selected for advancement to Round Two. Four judges served in the 2nd Round. In this round, each judge received several states' entries. In this round, each judge selected his or her designated State Senior Poet Laureate winner. The total number of state (and one international) winners was 43. In cases where scores were tight and/or ties needed to be broken, Honor Scroll Awards were given poems that fell slightly short of their states' SPL titles. There were 19 Honor Scroll Awards given. The 62 SPL and HS award winners were notified by letter around August 1, 2009.

How the National Senior Poet Laureate was Chosen

The 3rd Round of judging involved two judges and one tie-breaker judge who scored the 43 Senior Poet Laureate award winning poems. Using a system of 1 through 10, the scores were tallied by Yvonne Nunn, contest administrator, with poems receiving the top scores then entered in the 4th Round of Finals from which the poems with the highest overall score was named National Senior Poet Laureate and given a certificate and $500 check around August 15, 2008.

Blind copies were read by the judges, so the winners were selected by merit, not because a judge happened to recognize a poet's name. As coordinator, Yvonne Nunn was the only participant on the panel who knew the identity of each poet throughout the multiple-rounds competition. Wanda Sue Parrott served as sole judge in the selection of International Diploet and Golden Pen award winners.

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To read . . . SCANSION ... about the Contest click FAQs
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