Ricardo Alberto Maldonado

Ricardo Alberto Maldonado was born and raised in Puerto Rico. A graduate of Tufts and Columbia University’s School of the Arts, he is the author of The Life Assignment (Four Way Books, 2020), a finalist for the Poetry Society of America’s Norma Farber First Book Award, one of Remezcla’s Best Books by Latina or Latin American Authors, and Silver Medalist for the Juan Felipe Herrera Best Poetry Book Award. He is also the translator of Dinapiera Di Donato’s Colaterales/ Collateral (National Poetry Series / Akashic Books, 2013) and coeditor of Puerto Rico en mi corazón (Anomalous Press, 2019), a bilingual anthology that raised funds for grassroots recovery efforts in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria. 

Maldonado is the Academy of American Poets's President and Executive Director. Previously, he served as the co-director of 92NY’s Unterberg Poetry Center in New York City, where he produced one of the nation’s most prestigious reading series, as well as a curriculum of literary seminars and workshops for readers and writers of all ages, and the annual Discover Poetry Contest. In his role at 92NY’s Unterberg Poetry Center, he coedited two online anthologies: A New Colossus and Joy and Hope and All That, a tribute to poet Lucille Clifton.

Maldonado is the board chair of the Poetry Project and serves on the board of directors of the New York Foundation for the Arts and the Poetry Committee of the Brooklyn Book Festival. He is the recipient of fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, CantoMundo, Queer|Art|Mentorship, and the T. S. Eliot and Hawthornden foundations. He is currently part of El proyecto de la literatura puertorriqueña / The Puerto Rican Literature Project, a forthcoming online database collecting the creative output of Puerto Rican poets in the diaspora and archipelago, developed in partnership with the University of Houston’s Recovering the U.S. Hispanic Literary Heritage Program and the Mellon Foundation. Recent collaborations include: “You Are the Prelude,” a commission for a new choral and orchestral piece by Puerto Rican composer Angélica Negrón, which was performed at the reopening gala of New York Philharmonic’s David Geffen Hall.