Hosted by Michael Ian Black with entertainment from Broadway icons, Joe Iconis and George Salazar from BE MORE CHILL
10 Desbrosses Street
New York, NY 10013
Oskar Eustis has served as the Artistic Director of The Public Theater since 2005. In the last three years, he has produced two Tony Award-winning Best Musicals (Fun Home and Hamilton), and back-to-back winners of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, Hamilton and Sweat. He came to The Public from Trinity Repertory Company in Providence, RI where he served as Artistic Director from 1994 to 2005. Eustis served as Associate Artistic Director at Los Angeles’ Mark Taper Forum from 1989 to 1994, and prior to that he was with the Eureka Theatre Company in San Francisco, serving as Resident Director and Dramaturg from 1981 to 1986 and Artistic Director from 1986 to 1989. Eustis is currently a Professor of Dramatic Writing and Arts and Public Policy at New York University, and has held professorships at UCLA, Middlebury College, and Brown University, where he founded and chaired the Trinity Rep/Brown University Consortium for professional theater training. At The Public, Eustis directed the New York premieres of Rinne Groff’s Compulsion and The Ruby Sunrise; Larry Wright’s The Human Scale; and most recently Julius Caesar at Shakespeare in the Park. He has founded numerous ground-breaking programs at the Public, from Public Works and Public Forum to the Emerging Writers Group.
Gayle Forman is an award-winning, internationally bestselling author and journalist. Her #1 New York Times bestselling novel If I Stay was adapted into a film starring Chloe Grace Moretz. Gayle is also the author of several other bestselling novels , including Where She Went, I Was Here, the Just One series, Leave Me, and I Have Lost My Way. She lives in Brooklyn, New York with her husband and daughters.
15-year old Ny’Shira Lundy is an avid reader, aspiring author and digital creative from Katy, Texas. Ny’Shira is home-schooled but when her Katy District banned her favorite book, The Hate U Give, from school libraries in November 2017, Ny’Shira launched a petition that garnered nearly 4,000 signatures and successfully returned the book to library shelves. Her activism has inspired many, including her favorite author Angie Thomas. Ny’Shira continues to share her love of literature with her community through the young adult book club she launched. She hopes to become a writer and is currently working on her first novel.
“[The Hate U Give] can bring about unity and understanding among the different races in your middle and high schools. If young people decide they would like to read this book and their parents allow them to, then they should have the freedom to do so.”
A rising senior at Sussex County Technical School in Newton, NJ, Sadie Price-Elliott is a filmmaker, poet and activist. Her films explore themes of friendship, human connection, nature and surrealism. Last year, her short films Illuminations, Calyx and Corolla, and Lily were selected for the All American High School Film Festival, Black Bear Film Festival, South Bay Student Video Festival and the Princeton University Film Festival. Her latest film, I Can’t Be Silent, won first place in NCAC’s 2018 Youth Free Expression Film Contest and was featured on the Washington Post “Answer Sheet” blog. After graduation, Sadie hopes to continue making films that bridge divides and inspire activism for the collective good.
“To me, film is a unique medium that has the means to facilitate a conversation and influence people to take action. As a student filmmaker with a passion for activism, my goal is always to contribute by capturing the essence of movements and the people that join them.”
President, Penguin Young Readers (a division of Penguin Random House)
Jen began her career in books as a buyer for Joseph-Beth Booksellers. She then moved into the publishing world at Candlewick Press as a National Account Manager. There she called on a variety of national accounts both retail and wholesale. Jen then moved to a sales position at Houghton Mifflin where she was responsible for the wholesale channel as well as Canadian sales. She joined Harcourt in September of 2004 as VP of Sales, Children’s Books and was named VP of Sales & Marketing, Children’s Books in 2007. At the merger of Houghton Mifflin and Harcourt she became the Associate Publisher of the HMH children’s list. She joined Penguin Young Readers in 2009 as the Associate Publisher of the group.
President & Publisher, Simon & Schuster, Children’s Publishing Division
President, Trade Publishing, Scholastic Inc.
President & CEO, ABRAMS
President and Publisher, Random House Children’s Books
EVP and Publisher, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
President, Macmillan Publishers
INFORMATION & INQUIRIES
Sponsorship opportunities and table bookings are now open! Please see here for more information.
For sponsorships, tables, tickets and other inquiries, please email FreeSpeechCelebration@ncac.org or call 212.580.9228
For media and press inquiries, please contact Nora Pelizzari at email@example.com or 212.807.6222