New York City, March 5, 2013—PEN American Center, the largest branch of the world’s oldest literary and human rights organization, announced today at its Annual Members’ Meeting the newly-elected and reelected officer trustees of the Board, including John Troubh, Executive Vice President, and Jeri Laber, Vice President. Other newly-elected or reelected trustees of PEN’s Board are Jennifer Egan, Nathan Englander, Wendy Gimbel, Erroll McDonald, Elisabeth Sifton, and Andrew Solomon. Biographical information of these Trustees can be found here.

Commenting on the election result, Godwin said:

“It has been a privilege to be President of PEN American Center over the course of the last year. I have been happy to help build on the achievements of my predecessors, and to bring a greater number of esteemed writers and professionals onto PEN’s Board. PEN is the world’s oldest literary and human rights organization, and with our 90th anniversary behind us, we look to the future as new opportunities like the relaunch of and our Declaration on Digital Freedom, plus our ever-growing membership ranks, demonstrate the scope of our reach. In today’s climate, PEN’s mission to encourage and protect writers’ freedom of expression has never been more vital.”

Godwin introduced Suzanne Nossel, who was appointed Executive Director last month, said:

“I am pleased to welcome such a distinguished group of writers, activists and business leaders to the PEN Board. I look forward to working with our Trustees, current and new, to build PEN and to amplify the voice of writers and the creative community in the pursuit of international understanding and the defense of free expression both online and off.”

Two PEN trustees’ terms have come to an end after six years, Ron Chernow and Elissa Schappell, who will move onto PEN’s Advisory Council. Members of PEN’s Board continuing in their service are Cara Benson, Susan Bernofsky, Edward Burlingame, Anne Burt, Morgan Entrekin, Joanne Leedom-Ackerman, Christian Oberbeck, Tess O’Dwyer, Hannah Pakula, Gregory Pardlo, Walter Pozen, Theresa Rebeck, Susanna Reich, Clinton Ives Smullyan Jr., Rose Styron, Annette Tapert, Lynne Tillman, Danielle Truscott, Davis Weinstock, and Jacob Weisberg.

PEN American Center is the United States branch of PEN International, which was founded in 1921 as a response to the ethnic and national divisions that culminated in the First World War. Since its founding, PEN has worked to promote international understanding through the promotion of literature and the defense of free expression. PEN American Center was founded in 1922 and is the largest of the 145 PEN centers in 104 countries that constitute PEN International. Its distinguished Members carry on the contributions and achievements of such past Members as W.H. Auden, James Baldwin, Willa Cather, Robert Frost, Allen Ginsberg, Langston Hughes, Thomas Mann, Arthur Miller, Marianne Moore, Eugene O’Neill, Susan Sontag, and John Steinbeck. Recent presidents include Francine Prose, Ron Chernow, and Salman Rushdie.

For more information, contact:
Emma Connolly, (212) 334-1660, ext. 103, emma [at] pen [dot] org
Paul W. Morris, (212) 334-1660 ext. 108, paul [at] pen [dot] org