Friday, March 28, 2014

Pacific Grove's Larry Haggquist gets California Poetry Out Loud "Hero" Award

The California Arts Council has awarded Pacific Grove High teacher Larry Haggquist the second annual "Hero" award for the Poetry Out Loud program. Haggquist received the award on the state Senate floor on March 24 during the California Poetry Out Loud State Finals in the Senate Chamber at the State Capitol.

Haggquist was also the coach of 2014 State Runner-up, Haley Walker, a senior at Pacific Grove High School.

The Hero Award was established by the California Arts Council to acknowledge the remarkable work done in the classroom by the thousands of teachers, coaches, teaching artists and others who bring the California Poetry Out Loud program to life.

"It's the teachers and others who make this program happen, and for that, they are my personal heroes," said Kristin Margolis, arts program specialist at the Arts Council, who manages the literary programs.

Haggquist was selected as the second recipient of this award based on his extraordinary coaching and cultivation of young poets as an English teacher and the Poetry Out Loud coach at Pacific Grove High School. Haggquist has shown exceptional leadership as the coach of three Poetry Out Loud state champions and one runner-up. Students coached by Haggquist include:

2009 State Runner-up - Kylie Batlin
2010 State Champion - Morgan Brown
2011 State Champion - Robert Marchand
2013 State Champion - Arwa Arwan
2014 State Runner-up - Haley Walker

"Larry is masterful at inspiring students," said Matt Bell, Principal of Pacific Grove High School. "Whether in class, the Young Writer's Club, Poetry Out Loud, on sports teams or the Mock Trial team, every student that he encounters rises to levels higher than they thought possible. Larry draws his energy from the students and his passion for them and for his craft shows in everything he does."

This year marks the ninth time the California Arts Council has produced the annual competition - the largest of its kind in the nation, with over 40,000 students in 35 California counties participating. The program encourages high school students to learn about poetry through memorization, performance, and competition. For more information about the program, click here.

Congratulations, Mr. Haggquist! and Haley!


  1. The sound of a kiss is not so loud as that of a cannon, but its echo lasts a great deal longer. See the link below for more info.


  2. I have found your blogs to be friendly and welcoming. Thanks for making this one. I really enjoy reading and surfing it. Try to visit my site @