Roberto Fernández Retamar (born June 9, 1930, Havana) is a Cuban poet, essayist, literary critic and President of the Casa de las Américas. In his role as President of the organization, Fernández also serves on the Council of State of Cuba. An early close confidant of Che Guevara and Fidel Castro, he has remained a central figure in Cuba since the 1959 Revolution. Retamar has also written over a dozen major collections of verse and founded the Casa de las Americas cultural magazine. Professor De Castro Rocha, at the University of Manchester has described Retamar as "one of the most distinguished Latin American intellectuals of the twentieth century." In 1989, he was award the National Prize for Literature, Cuba's national literary award and most important award of its type.