The Palm Beach Poetry Festival has awarded three 2020 Fellowships, the Langston Hughes Fellowship, the Kundiman Fellowship, and the CantoMundo Fellowship for the 16th Annual Festival workshops. “The fellowships cover full workshop tuition and lodging during the festival,” said Susan R. Williamson, Festival Director. These fellowships represent a substantial investment in education focused on the craft of writing poetry. We have been working toward opening the doors widely to the festival workshops and offer participants the opportunity to work together with these exceptionally talented fellows who were selected from the largest applicant pool in our 16 year history,” said Miles Coon, Founder and President. “We have been blessed with very talented Fellowship and Scholarship applicants.”

The Festival’s 2020 Fellowship winners include: 

The 2020 Langston Hughes Palm Beach Poetry Festival fellowship was awarded to Rachael Uwada Clifford. She was selected as a Best New Poet of 2019 as well as the winner of Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers. She has received fellowships from the Cave Canem Foundation, the Maryland State Arts Council, and others. She holds an MFA from the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University. Her work appears, or will soon appear, in Glimmer Train and Best New Poets 2019. She lives in Baltimore.

The 2020 Palm Beach Poetry Festival Kundiman fellowship was awarded to Ina Cariño, who was born in Baguio City in the Philippines. Her poetry and prose appear in New England Review, The Oxford Review of Books, Fugue, Tupelo Quarterly, Nat. Brut, VIDA Review, and December Magazine, among other journals. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC and was a 2019 Kundiman Fellow.

The 2020 Palm Beach Poetry Festival Canto Mundo Fellowship was awarded to Heidi Andrea Restrepo Rhodes, a queer Colombian/Latinx poet, artist, scholar, & activist. Her first full-length collection, “The Inheritance of Haunting” (2019) was chosen by Ada Limón for the 2018 Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize. A 2018 VONA Alum and 2019 CantoMundo Fellow, her poetry has been published in Poetry, Academy of American Poets Poem-a-Day, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Raspa, & Nat.Brut, among other places. She grew up in California and currently lives in Brooklyn.

The Festival’s 2020 Scholarships were awarded to:

Ae Hee Lee, winner of the 2020 Thomas Lux Scholarship, was born in South Korea, raised in Peru, and now resides in the U.S. She received her MFA from the University of Notre Dame, where she was winner of the 2016 Billy Maich Academy of American Poets Prize. She is currently a PhD candidate in Creative Writing at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and works as Associate Editor for Cream City Review. Her poetry has been published or is forthcoming at POETRY, Narrative, Pleiades, and Denver Quarterly, among others.


This year’s Sarah Lawrence Scholar, poet Faith Henley Padgett, was raised in Texas and earned her BA from the University of Pennsylvania and is a current MFA student at Sarah Lawrence. Her work has appeared in Hanging Loose, Permafrost, Red Cedar Review, and Penn Appetite, among others. She previously served as a contributor with the Southwest Reviewand Spry, and as a letterpress assistant. A teacher for Poetry in America, she organizes for the Sarah Lawrence Poetry Festival and resides in Nyack, NY.