IRA Lee Bennett Hopkins Promising Poet Award

The IRA Lee Bennett Hopkins Promising Poet Award is given every three years to a promising new poet of children’s poetry (for children and young adults up to grade 12) who has published no more than two books of children’s poetry. A book-length single poem maybe submitted. The award is for published works only. Poetry in any language may be submitted; non-English poetry must be accompanied by an English translation. 

For additional information, please contact the

The next award will be Spring 2016—will open for submission in May 2015.

Award Recipients


Guadalupe Garcia McCall

Under the Mesquite

Lee and Low Books

Guadalupe Garcia McCall was born in Mexico and moved to Texas as a young girl, keeping close ties with family on both sides of the border. Trained in Theater Arts and English, she now teaches English/Language Arts at a junior high school. Her poems for adults have appeared in more than twenty literary journals. McCall is an up-and-coming talent whose debut YA novel, Under the Mesquite, won the Pura Belpré Award and was named a Morris Award finalist. McCall lives with her husband and their three sons in the San Antonio, Texas area. You can find her on the Web at


Gregory Neri
Chess Rumble (Lee & Low Books)


Joyce Lee Wong
Seeing Emily (Amulet)


Lindsay Lee Johnson
Soul Moon Soup (Front Street)


Craig Crist-Evans
Moon Over Tennessee: A Boy’s Civil War Journal (Houghton Mifflin)


Kristine O’Connell George
The Great Frog Race and Other Poems (Clarion)


Deborah Chandra
Rich Lizard and Other Poems (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
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