November 1, 2019, 6pm
Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Beverly Hills
Celebrating champions of free expression
LA Committee Co-Chairs
David Francis, Moira Griffin, Robert Perrin
2019 LitFest Gala Chair
LA and Gala Committee Members
Bonnie Abaunza*, Leslie Belzberg, Laura Bickford, Jade Chang, David Ebershoff, Kathy Eldon*, Matt Galsor, Dana Johnson, David Kaye, Neal Koch*, Kat Kramer*, Christine La Monte*, Franklin Leonard, Micky Levy*, M.G. Lord, Marvin and Keri Putnam, Carrie and Ken Richman*, Howard A. Rodman, Danna Rosenthal*, Seth Schachner, Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney, Nicole A. Tetreault, David Ulin, Maya Windholz, Sholeh Wolpé, KK Wootton, Tom Zoellner
*Gala Committee Only
Michelle Franke, Executive Director, Los Angeles
About LitFest Gala
The PEN America LitFest Gala is a highlight of the Los Angeles literary and social calendars, with over 500 guests and an impressive group of leading writers and creatives who sit among them as Literary Hosts.
Now in its 29th year, PEN America’s LitFest Gala is a celebration of free expression and the literary arts. Each year, the event brings together impassioned tributes, conversation, and levity before an esteemed audience of authors, screenwriters, producers, showrunners, executives, philanthropists, actors, and devotees of the written word who share a commitment to the robust defense of creative freedom in Los Angeles and around the world.
Proceeds from PEN America’s LitFest Gala support initiatives including: advocacy for writers, journalists, and artists threatened or imprisoned worldwide; landmark research that addresses critical free speech issues; and the advancement of literary excellence and cross-cultural exchanges through hallmark initiatives, including the World Voices Festival of International Literature, PEN America’s Literary Awards, and fellowship and grants programs.
Recently honored luminaries and participants include Ai Weiwei, Barry Jenkins, Marti Noxon, Gillian Flynn, Roxane Gay, Isabel Allende, Jose Antonio Vargas, Margaret Atwood, Janet Mock, Norman Lear, Guillermo del Toro, Amber Tamblyn, Aisha Tyler, Amy Poehler, and Cecile Richards.