Artist Bio

Susan Justiniano | RescuePoetix (ella/ellas), is a Paterson NJ born first generation Puerto Rican multi-hyphenate artist. She found her performance voice in Jersey City NJ in 2006. As a self-taught bilingual, internationally published and performing poet, playwright, arts and culture workshop facilitator, teaching artist and recording artist cultural identity is rooted in her work. She is twice honored Poet Laureate: The first Puerto Rican woman Poet Laureate of Jersey City, NJ (2020-2022) and State of New Jersey Beat Poet Laureate (2022-2024). She expands the positions of Poet Laureate and Teaching Artist to engage artists of varied cultures and languages to reflect the diversity of the Literary and Performing Arts communities.

She serves as the representative for Puerto Rico of the 2021 Grand Marshall Class for the Jersey City West Indian American Caribbean American Carnival Association and is listed in the Latino Book Review Database of Latino Poet Laureates in the US. She is the Poet in Residence for Walk_Bye Public Art, Jersey City NJ. Susan also serves on the Hudson County Community College Poetry Collective (Jersey City), as an adviser, collaborator, and event producer. She is also the Regional Leader for Free Mom Hugs NJ – Hudson County. She serves on the boards of In Full Color (Jersey City), Art Pride NJ (Co-Lead, Independent Advisory Board), Art Pride NJ Strategic Planning Committee, The Justice Arts Coalition (Board Member, Executive Committee) and committees throughout the USA with a focus on equity and equality in the Arts. As a Teaching Artist and Information Technology Education Specialist with over ten years of professional experience, she has prepared and conduct curriculum for various age ranges, socio-economic backgrounds, and levels of exposure to the arts and technology.

She had conducted residencies and workshops at Educational Arts Team (Jersey City), JF Kennedy HS (Paterson), Rosa Parks School of Fine & Performing Arts (Paterson), Franklin High School (Someret), Passaic High School (Passaic), Jersey City Free Public Library (Jersey City), Union Public Library (Union), New York Public Library (Bronx NY) and throughout various other New Jersey and New York schools, Public Libraries and Social Justice organizations. She has served as judge for Poetry Out Loud NJ in 2023 and 2024. This ongoing practice provides opportunities to continue developing behind the scenes as well as in front of audiences.