ArtsFairfax invites the community to celebrate Danielle Badra as the 2022-2024 Fairfax Poet Laureate. Representing Fairfax County and serving as a poetry ambassador, Badra accepts the County’s esteemed honor and plans to extend her love of poetry through literary engagement activities in Fairfax County Parks.   

“Language, for me, is a salve. The more you use it, the more power you have to heal your wounds and the wounds of others,” said Badra. “My experiences in life and in the literary world directly inspire my vision for the next two years as Fairfax Poet Laureate. Through poetry workshops, readings, and activities in the Parks, I want to illuminate how language and our natural environment can be a source of comfort and creativity.” 

 Badra received her Bachelor of Arts in Creative Writing from Kalamazoo College and her Master of Fine Arts in Poetry from George Mason University, where she was the poetry editor of

So To Speak, a feminist literary and arts journal, and an intern for Split This Rock. Her manuscript Like We Still Speak was selected by Fady Joudah and Hayan Charara as the winner of the 2021 Etel Adnan Poetry Prize and published through the University of Arkansas Press. It was named a semi-finalist for the Khayrallah Prize and listed in Entropy’s “Best of 2020-2021: Poetry Books & Poetry Collections.”  

“The Fairfax Poet Laureate is a remarkable example of how support to a single artist can impact the whole county,” said Linda S. Sullivan, ArtsFairfax president & CEO. “Danielle’s vision to bring poetry to the parks is inspired, and we’re as excited to learn from her as we are thrilled to share her work with the Greater Fairfax community.” 

Established since 2020, the Fairfax Poet Laureate serves as a literary arts ambassador, promoting poetry as an art form in the county, region, and state. During their tenure, the Fairfax Poet Laureate encourages writing and reading of poetry and all types of literature through a community service project designed for county residents. 

Dialogue with the Dead  is Badra’s first chapbook, a collection of contrapuntal poems in dialogue with her deceased sister. Her poems have appeared in Mizna, Cincinnati Review, The Maynard, Outlook Springs, 45th Parallel, The California Journal of Poetics, Duende, The Greensboro Review, Bad Pony, Rabbit Catastrophe Press, Split This Rock, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, and elsewhere.   

In addition to teaching undergraduate composition, literature, and poetry at George Mason University, Badra has led writing workshops at The National Museum of Women in the Arts, Split This Rock Poetry Festival, OutWrite DC, and in high schools. She has been a featured reader for Split This Rock’s “Sunday Kind of Love” series, a judge for Brave New Voices in D.C., and a participant in Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here, a festival commemorating the 2007 bombing of a historic book market in Baghdad, Iraq.

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