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Can Poetry Change A Person? Hear from Street Poets Inc. founder Chris Henrikson here.

STREET POETS Inc. is a non-profit poetry-based peace-making organization dedicated to the creative process as a force for individual and community transformation.

Street Poets Staff photo 2008

  1. TO INSPIRE at-risk youth in the juvenile detention facilities, schools and streets of Los Angeles County to discover and develop their voices as writers, artists and human beings.

  2. TO EMPOWER these young people to use the skills and increased self-awareness engendered through the arts to transcend self-destructive lifestyles.

  3. TO CREATE a healing community that unites different racial, ethnic and socioeconomic segments of our city around the transformational power of the creative process.

In 1995, Street Poets Inc. founder Chris Henrikson began teaching a weekly poetry workshop in the Los Angeles County Probation Department's Camp Fred Miller as a volunteer through the Writers Guild of America. The experience transformed his life, and, in the process, Street Poets United, a grassroots poetry collective for the workshop alumni, was born. In 1997, the group joined forces with the New York City-based DreamYard Drama Project to form DreamYard/LA. Street Poets worked under the DreamYard umbrella from 1997 to 2005 when we made the decision to reclaim our original name and become Street Poets Inc., a California non-profit corporation. Now, with our own independent 501c3 status, we continue to provide transformational workshops for youth and young adults at school and juvenile detention sites through Los Angeles, while expanding our peace-making work in the community.

Chris Henrikson
Executive Director
(read bio)

Read Founder's Interview with

Read Chris Henrikson's Commencement Speech at the Milton Academy Graduation (Milton, MA)

Marjorie Jean
Associate Director
(read bio)

Chirag Menon
Program Coordinator
(read bio)

Frank Escamilla
Teaching Artist

Michelle Sorgen
Grant Writer/Manager & Teaching Artist

Darlene Chavarria
Teaching Artist/Street Poet

Matt Sawaya
Teaching Artist
(read bio)

Arturo Quiros
Studio Engineer & Outreach Associate
(read bio)

Mari Beltran
Social Media Coordinator

Taylor Maxie Jr.
Teaching Artist
(read bio)

Mayda del Valle
Teaching Artist
(Visit Mayda's website -


  • Neal Anderson, Co-Founder/Managing Partner, The Propellant Group
  • Susannah Grant, Screenwriter/Director
  • Chenjerai Kumanyika, Music Producer/Recording Artist
  • Leo Marmol, Architect/Partner, Marmol & Radziner Architecture & Construction
  • Loren Montgomery, Attorney/Consultant
  • Robert Perrin, Partner/Attorney, Latham & Watkins
  • Alison Tatlock, Screenwriter/Playwright
  • Greg Walker, Writer/Producer
  • Rona Mercado, Cashmere Agency
  • Julie Young, Attorney


  • Justin Heimberg, Writer (Former Associate Director)
  • Javier Stauring, Director, Office of Restorative Justice, Archdiocese of Los Angeles
  • Maha Dakhil, Literary Agent, Creative Artists Agency
  • Larry Dorsey, Retired Camp Director, Los Angeles County Probation Dept.
  • Michael Etter, Graphic Designer, Founder Re:Active Magazine
  • Kenan Harris-Holley, Writer (Former Associate Director)
  • Adam Smith, Founder, Seeking Peace Poetry & Meditation Workshop
  • Alex Koffler, Creative Director, Imitsu Media
  • Heath Slane, Slane & Slane Designs


  • Jeff Greenberg, Agent, Paradigm Agency
  • Michelle Habecker
  • Kalynn Jenkins, Producer
  • Vi Ka Margulis
  • Christian Rozier, Filmmaker/Educator, Cosmic Rockstar Productions
  • Susy Sobel, Student, Pitzer College

Street Poets Inc. Poets

Poetry from the Street Poets Inc. Community

Read the Poetry

Street Poets United visits Beautiful Struggle on KPFK FM 90.7

Listen up here:

Street Poets United visits KIIS FM 102.7

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Check here to keep up to date on our upcoming events.

Street Poets Community

Friday, December 19th 7-9pm @ Eco-Logical Art Gallery

For more info: 323-737-8545 or Click Here.

If you are interested in making a contribution, please contact Street Poets Inc. at 323-737-8545 or click on the link below. We also are set up to accept matching gifts from corporations.

Because Street Poets Inc. is tax-exempt 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization, donations are tax-deductible.

Street Poets Inc. is on facebook! Please get online and join our cause!!