Tamara Oakman, a student in the M.A. in English program, has been named as a judge for the Black Women’s Arts Festival’s first Poetry Chapbook Contest. “Tamara Oakman’s is a name I’ve seen many times on the internet waves in regards to Philadelphia poetry,” writes Cassendre Xavier, Founder and Executive Director of the festival. “She’s hosted, co-hosted, or created various venues in this town and our paths were going to cross! If you’re a burgeoning or performing poet in or near Philly, I highly recommend networking with Tamara and/or following her schedule! … She says, ‘Whenever I read a work I don't get caught up on technique. Anybody can learn technique. Hanabi-Ko (Koko) the gorilla wrote Haikus about bananas. What I like to read is something that cuts me up on the inside, makes me laugh, makes me see something in a different way, moves me. A poem could be about a stick on the ground and still be stirring.” Read more about Oakman’s biography.