Barack Obama To Receive Award By PEN America
It’s been a great month for former president Barack Obama. He released his new memoir, A Promised Land, to record sales, Joe Biden, who served under him as vice president is now President-elect, and now he has a new honor being bestowed on him.
According to ABC News, Obama will receive PEN America’s second annual Voice of Influence Award in recognition of how his writings “have traversed political, social, and ideological bounds and framed a self-reflective humanism that has marked his influence on public life.”
Founded in 1922, PEN America is a nonprofit that works to defend and celebrate free expression through the advancement of literature and human rights
Obama will be honored on December 8 at the literary human rights organization’s annual gala, which will be held virtually due to the coronavirus pandemic.
During the ceremony, the 44th President and historian Ron Chernow, a former board president of PEN, will discuss the importance of truth and freedom of expression in a world of misinformation.
“As an organization of writers, we have always seen President Obama not just as a leader, but as one of us: an author,” PEN America CEO Suzanne Nossel said in a statement, according to ABC. “His probing and evocative narratives helped introduce the world to his unique background, and the power of his life experience as a prompt toward a more pluralistic and encompassing society.”
Filmmaker Ava DuVernay was awarded PEN’s first Voice of Influence Award last year.