Illinois Arts Council Agency Announces Poetry Out Loud State Final

Illinois Arts Council Agency Announces

Poetry Out Loud State Final

16 Regional Winners Advance from 6,800 Participants in 62 Illinois High Schools Statewide

ILLINOIS -- The Illinois Arts Council Agency is pleased to announce Illinois’ 2013-2014 Poetry Out Loud State Final, featuring recitations by sixteen regional contest winners. The event will take place on Friday, March 14, 2014, beginning at 1:00 p.m. in Springfield’s Hoogland Center for the Arts. Attendance is free, open to the public, and accessible.

Six thousand eight hundred ten students from 62 Illinois high schools participated in this year’s Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest, a free program created by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation to encourage youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and performance. The Illinois Arts Council Agency implements Poetry Out Loud statewide as a collaborative project with seven regional not-for-profit partners.   

The Illinois Poetry Out Loud State Champion will receive $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., in April, to compete for the national championship. The state champion's school will also receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books. The state’s Poetry Out Loud runner-up will receive $100, with $200 for his or her school library. At the National Poetry Out Loud Finals in Washington, DC, fifty-three Poetry Out Loud champions from every state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands will compete for a total of $50,000 in scholarships and school stipends.

The sixteen regional finalists competing in the Illinois Poetry Out Loud State Final on March 14, 2014 in Springfield are:





Central Illinois

Annabelle Emuze

Southeast High School (Springfield)

Central Illinois

Annie Kefalas

St. Teresa High School (Decatur)

Chicagoland - City

Grace Anderson

University of Chicago Lab School (Chicago)

Chicagoland - City

Daisy Ochoa

Taft High School (Chicago)

Chicagoland - Suburbs

Monica Labelle

Wheaton-Warrenville South High School (Wheaton)

Chicagoland - Suburbs

Abigail Warhus

Evanston Township High School (Evanston)

Eastern Illinois

Cedric D.B. Jones

Champaign Central High School (Champaign)

Eastern Illinois

Jonlyn Miller

Champaign Central High School (Champaign)

Northern Illinois

Whydler Moore

Jefferson High School (Rockford)

Northern Illinois

Asia Ward

Auburn High School (Rockford)

South Central Illinois

Taylor Robinson

Edwardsville High School (Edwardsville)

South Central Illinois

Elixxa Warner

Alton High School (Alton)

Southern Illinois

Ally Payne

Clay City High School (Clay City)

Southern Illinois

Kristin Doty

Agape Christian School (Marion)

Western Illinois

Marley DeVoss

Orion High School (Orion))

Western Illinois

Shelby Hoffman

Orion High School (Orion)

For more information about the national Poetry Out Loud program, visit

For information regarding Illinois’ regional and school Poetry Out Loud competitions in your local area, contact directly the Illinois Arts Council Agency’s partnering organization:



Not-for-Profit Partner

Contact Person

Contact Information

Central Illinois

Springfield Area Arts Council

Sheila Walk



Literature for All of Us

Liz McCabe


Eastern Illinois

40 North/88 West

Amanda Baker


Northern Illinois

Rockford Area Arts Council

Sharon Nesbit-Davis


South Central Illinois

Jacoby Arts Center

Eric Stauffer


Southern Illinois

Carbondale Community Arts

Nancy Stemper


Western Illinois

Quad City Arts

Tracy Alan White



Contact Information