Rebecca Werner is the director of membership at PEN America, where she oversees all membership related administration and acts as the primary liaison between PEN America Members and the organization at large. Werner has spent the past decade as a membership professional nurturing and supporting writers across multiple disciplines. As the director of membership, she works to extend participation and bolster support for PEN America across the country, aiming to elevate PEN America to a fully national organization. Werner manages PEN America’s Membership Committee, oversees regional membership engagement and Chapter growth, and works closely with the Children and YA Books Committee, Translation Committee, and the Writers in the Schools Committee.
Most recently, Werner was the director of member services at the Dramatists Guild of America, the national association of playwrights, composers, lyricists, and librettists. In addition to her primary responsibilities at the Dramatists Guild relating to membership management, she also managed the Guild’s Opera Committee, Membership Committee, and Intern Program; served on the Publications Committee; and was the editor of the annual DG Resource Directory. During her tenure, Werner also led a joint project with the Lilly Awards Foundation, “The Count,” a study of gender parity in regional theatre. “The Count” was featured in The Dramatist, American Theatre, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and IndieWire.
Werner honed her fundraising and development skills within the development department at the Metropolitan Opera and served as executive director of New York Opera Exchange through four successful seasons of well-reviewed, often sold-out operatic productions. She has presented and/or served as a panelist at conferences and festivals across the United States on topics such as the importance of a free press, self-production for dramatists, audition techniques, and gender parity in American theatre. Werner holds a BA in Political Science and Theatre Arts from Marymount Manhattan College and earned an Executive Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership and Management from the Austin W. Marxe School of Public and International Affairs at Baruch College through the New York Community Trust Leadership Fellows Program.