Join us in celebrating the Texas Institute of Letters Finalists and Award Winners with a poetry reading!
Laura Villareal is a poet and book critic. Her debut poetry collection, Girl’s Guide to Leaving, (University of Wisconsin Press 2022) was awarded Texas Institute of Letter’s John A. Robert Johnson Award for a First Book of Poetry. She earned an MFA at Rutgers University—Newark and has been the recipient of fellowships and scholarships from the Stadler Center for Poetry and Literary Arts, National Book Critics Circle’s Emerging Critics Program, VONA, Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and the Dobie Paisano Fellowship Program at University of Texas-Austin. She is currently an associate with Letras Latinas, the literary initiative at the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies, where she co-edits and writes for Letras Latinas Blog 2, in addition to working on other related projects.
Ayokunle Falomo is Nigerian, American, and the author of Autobiomythography of (Alice James Books, 2024), AFRICANAMERICAN’T (FlowerSong Press, 2022), two self-published collections and African, American (New Delta Review, 2019; selected by Selah Saterstrom as the winner of New Delta Review’s 8th annual chapbook contest). A recipient of fellowships from Vermont Studio Center, MacDowell, and the University of Michigan’s Helen Zell Writers’ Program, where he obtained his MFA in Creative Writing—Poetry, his work has been anthologized and widely published.
J. Estanislao Lopez is the author of We Borrowed Gentleness (Alice James Books 2022). His poems have been featured in The New Yorker, Poetry Magazine, The Rumpus, BreakBeat Poets Vol. 4: LatiNext, The Slowdown Podcast, and elsewhere. He lives and teaches in his hometown, Houston.