The 2017 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball

Saturday
February 18, 2017
6:30 pm

The Houstonian
111 North Post Oak Lane

Claire & Robert Campbell
Kelly & Michael Sklar
GALA CHAIRS

Curtis Sittenfeld
FEATURED SPEAKER

Black tie

Thanks to the 2017 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball, Houston will continue to be a thriving city nurtured by creative writers and readers.

Attended by like-minded Houstonians recognizing the value of reading and creative writing, the evening includes lively readings, a talk by New York Times bestselling author Curtis Sittenfeld, book-themed table decorations, and engaging conversation with fellow literary enthusiasts.

This year, the festive annual black tie evening takes place on Saturday, February 18, 2017, chaired by Claire & Robert Campbell and Kelly & Michael Sklar, at The Houstonian.

To attend the 2017 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball click here.
For a schedule of the evening’s festivities click here.
To learn more about the featured speaker Curtis Sittenfeld click here.
To learn more about the before-dinner readers click here.

The evening will begin with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres at 6:30 pm. At 7 pm, guests will enjoy short salon-style readings by three talented writers, each of whom have received an Inprint fellowship or prize: Hayan Charara, J. Bradford Hipps, and Janine Joseph. After the readings, guests can mingle while touring the tables in the ballroom, all of which will be decorated on literary themes by gala committee members and guests, featuring books and items from personal collections.

After a gourmet dinner, with live music by Latin Carnaval, New York Times bestselling author Curtis Sittenfeld will give a lively talk over coffee and dessert.

As a thank-you gift, guests will receive an exclusive handcrafted signed limited-edition chapbook, an excerpt from Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld, designed by book artists Cathy Hunt and Fiona McGettigan, and available only to Ball supporters and attendees.

Proceeds from the Ball help to support vital Inprint programs, including: fellowships and prizes for some of the nation’s top emerging writers at the University of Houston Creative Writing Program (surpassing $4 million to date); literary performance programs such as the Inprint Margarett Root Brown Reading Series (now in its 36th season), Cool Brains! Inprint Readings for Young People, and Inprint Poetry Buskers; community writers  workshops for aspiring writers, K-12 teachers, senior citizens, and healthcare providers; and much more.

 

Attend the 2017 Inprint Ball

GALA CHAIRS
Claire & Robert Campbell
Kelly & Michael Sklar

GALA COMMITTEE
Katharine Bowdoin Barthelme
Christina Bryan & Trey Peacock
Jane & Robert Cabes
Stephanie & Ernie Cockrell
Consuelo Duroc-Danner
Cece & Mack Fowler
Eleanor & Dan Gilbane
Marc Grossberg
Patricia P. Hubbard
Laura & Steve Jones
Michael Marek
Franci Neely
Genevieve & Shawn Patterson
Carolyn Roch & Matt Henneman
Brittany Sakowitz & Kevin Kushner
Millette & Haag Sherman
Hinda Simon
Kathryn & Craig Smyser
Kelsi Stayart & Will White
Margaret Vaughan & Jonathan Cox
Allie & Sam Veselka
Mark Wawro & Melanie Gray
Stacey & Andrew White
Elizabeth & Andrew Ziccardi

We hope you will  join us for the 2017 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball. Below are the table and seat options. To reserve a table or seats print and fill out the reply card available here and mail to Inprint, 1520 West Main, Houston, Texas 77006, or email to Inprint Development Director Ann Shaw, ann@inprinthouston.org. We appreciate your payment by check so that your support fully serves Houston’s readers and writers.

Tables for Ten
VISIONARY TABLE $30,000
UNDERWRITER TABLE $20,000
BENEFACTOR TABLE $10,000
SPONSOR TABLE $7,500
PATRON TABLE $5,000

Individual Seats
VISIONARY $3,000
UNDERWRITER $2.000
BENEFACTOR $1,000
SPONSOR $750
PATRON $500

Special thanks to the supporters of the 2017 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball

This list was last updated on 2/10/17

UNDERWRITERS
Claire & Robert Campbell
Nancy McGregor & Neal Manne/Kathryn & Craig Smyser
Barbara & Louis Sklar/Kelly & Michael Sklar

BENEFACTORS
Chinhui & Eddie Allen
Randi Faust & Carl Herman/Edward & Helen Oppenheimer Foundation
Brooke & Dan Feather/Judy & Marc Herzstein
The Financial Advisory Group, Inc.
Jerry & Nanette Finger Foundation/Martha & Richard Finger
Jeff Fort & Kristina Van Dyke
Stephanie Larsen/Jeff Beauchamp
Sabria & Kevin Lewis/Sidley Austin LLP
Mark Wawro & Melanie Gray
Nina & Michael Zilkha

SPONSORS
Rachel & Bud Frazier/Bobbi & Vic Samuels
Eleanor & Dan Gilbane/Gwendolyn Dawson & Ba Nguyen
Laura & Steve Jones
Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.
Marcia West & Ron Lewis

 

PATRONS
Dina Alsowayel & Tony Chase
Amegy Bank
Robin Angly & Miles Smith/Caroline & Perryn Leech
Mary & Marcel Barone
Susannah Bowen/Jack & Annis Bowen Foundation
Karen & Michael Brisch/Henneman Rau LLP
Carolyn & Platt Davis
Mary S. & Jack Dawson/Susie & Joe Dilg
Petrello Family Foundation
Teal & Jeff Reamer
Louisa Stude Sarofim
Diana Strassmann & Jeff Smisek
Thompson & Knight Foundation
Phoebe & Bobby Tudor

INDIVIDUAL VISIONARIES
Consuelo Duroc-Danner
Debbie Gary
Nancy Manderson

INDIVIDUAL BENEFACTORS
Bud Light/Silver Eagle Distributors
Bettie Cartwright
Cece & Mack Fowler
Sis & Hasty Johnson
Leah Lax
Marley Lott
Anne & John Mendelsohn
Nancy Powell Moore
Hinda Simon
Lois & George Stark
Stacey & Andrew White

INDIVIDUAL SPONSORS
Melissa & Marrick Armstrong
Liz & Steve Crowell
Margaret & Alan Hill
Linda & George Kelly
Harriet & Truett Latimer
Victoria & Marshal Lightman
Anna Mavromatis
Marilyn Miller & Robert Huntly
Cara & Michael Rudelson
Andrea & Bill White

INDIVIDUAL PATRONS
Dorothy J. Alcorn
Scott Atlas
Christina Bryan & Trey Peacock
Jane & Robert Cabes
Laura & John Calaway
Judith Chapman & Terrence Doody
Nijad & Zeina Fares
Valerie & Rick Greiner
Madeleine Callery Hussey
Elizabeth & Albert Kidd
Elena & Kenneth Marks
Shirat Mavligit & Ken Hughes
Betty Moody
Marcia & Michael Nichols
Shelly & Martin Power
Carolyn & Jimmy Robertson
David Ruiz
Katie Sammons & Terry Lohrenz
Stefani Shapiro & Andrew Golub
Bettina & Martin Siegel
Doreen Stoller & Dan Piette
Molly & Coert Voorhees
Ann & Rob Weisgarber

Festivities of the 2017 Inprint Ball

6:30 pm  COCKTAILS AND HORS D’OEUVRES

7 pm   READINGS

Salon-style readings by Inprint fellowship and prize recipients: Hayan Charara, J. Bradford Hipps, and Janine Joseph

8 pm   TOURING TABLE DECORATIONS

Literary-themed tables in the ballroom decorated by Gala Committee members, table hosts, and volunteers, featuring books and items from personal collections.

8:15 pm   DINNER

Menu designed by Robert Del Grande of Cafe Annie. Music of Latin Carnaval.

9 pm   TALK

New York Times bestselling author Curtis Sittenfeld, over coffee and dessert.

 

About featured speaker Curtis Sittenfeld

cropped-curtis-sittenfeld-author-photo-josephine-sittenfeld“Novelists get called master storytellers all the time, but CURTIS SITTENFELD really is one,” says The Washington Post. Her most recent New York Times bestseller, Eligible, is a contemporary retelling of Jane Austen’s classic Pride and Prejudice. The Irish Times calls it “a hugely entertaining and surprisingly unpredictable book, bursting with wit and charm,” and Elle magazine writes, “If there exists a more perfect pairing than Curtis Sittenfeld and Jane Austen, we dare you to find it…. Sittenfeld makes an already irresistible story even more beguiling and charming.” According to the New York Times this is “the latest book in the Austen Project, a series that pairs contemporary novelists with Austen’s six works. So far, there have been versions of Emma by Alexander McCall Smith; Northanger Abbey by the Scottish crime novelist Val McDermid; and Sense & Sensibility by Joanna Trollope.”

Born in 1975 in Cincinnati, Ohio (where Eligible is set), Sittenfeld studied creative writing at Stanford University and earned an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her first novel, Prep, set in an elite Massachusetts boarding school, was chosen as one of the “Ten Best Books of 2005” by The New York Times, was nominated for the United Kingdom’s Orange Prize, and has been optioned by Paramount Pictures. Sittenfeld’s third novel, American Wife, loosely based on former First Lady Laura Bush, was chosen as one of the “Ten Best Books of 2008” by Time, People, and Entertainment Weekly, and was also nominated for the Orange Prize. Her other novels include Sisterland and The Man of My Dreams.

Sittenfeld’s short stories and nonfiction have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Atlantic Monthly, Salon, Slate, Glamour, and on National Public Radio’s “This American Life.” Her books have been translated into 25 languages.

Featured Authors at the 2017 Inprint Ball

Each of the readers has received an Inprint fellowship or prize

hayan-charara-squareHAYAN CHARARA, born in Detroit to Arab immigrants, studied biology and chemistry at Wayne State University before turning to poetry. He is author of three poetry collections—Something SinisterThe Sadness of Others, and The Alchemist’s Diary, and the children’s book The Three Lucys which received the New Voices Award Honor. He is also editor of Inclined to Speak, an anthology of contemporary Arab American poetry. Hayan earned a master’s degree from New York University’s Draper Interdisciplinary Master’s Program and a PhD from the University of Houston Creative Writing Program. His honors include the Inprint Lucille Joy Prize in Poetry and a literature fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. Hayan currently teaches at the UH Honors College.

brad-hipps-squareJ. BRADFORD HIPPS turned to fiction after ten years in software. He received an MFA from the University of Houston Creative Writing Program, where he was awarded an Inprint C. Glenn Cambor Fellowship and the Inprint Michener Prize. Dwight Garner, in The New York Times, described his first novel The Adventurist as “bright and large-souled… a brisk and polished and somehow very American novel.” Kirkus Reviews, in a starred review, called the writing “just about perfect: incisive, eloquent, philosophical, and witty by turns… Like Richard Ford, Hipps finds illumination about the meaning of life everywhere he looks.” Hipps is also author of a recent New York Times Sunday Review op-ed (“To Write Better Code, Read Virginia Woolf”), which explores the conjunction between software and art. He works and lives in Houston.

janine-joseph-squareJANINE JOSEPH, born and raised in the Philippines and southern California, is the author of Driving Without a License, winner of the Kundiman Poetry Prize and featured as a “Top Poetry Pick” by Library Journal. Janine holds an MFA from New York University and a PhD from the University of Houston Creative Writing Program. Among her many honors, she has received an Inprint Barthelme Fellowship in Poetry and an Inprint Fund Dissertation Completion Fellowship. While in Houston, Inprint connected her with Houston Grand Opera Community Outreach, which commissioned from Janine three chamber-opera librettos: What Wings They Were: The Case of Emeline, On This Muddy Water: Voices from the Houston Ship Channel, and From My Mother’s Mother. Currently she teaches creative writing at Oklahoma State University.

Past Inprint Poets & Writers Ball Speakers

Rabih Alameddine
Edward Albee
Martin Amis
Russell Baker
Ann Beattie
Michael Chabon
Justin Cronin
Mark Doty
Jeffrey Eugenides
Richard Ford
Kaye Gibbons
Edward Hirsch
Richard Howard
Mary Karr
Tony Kushner
Peter Matthiessen
Colum McCann
Larry McMurtry
Joyce Carole Oates
Michael Ondaatje
George Plimpton
Salman Rushdie
Richard Russo
Natasha Trethewey
Calvin Trillin
Scott Turow
Wendy Wasserstein

Highlights from the 2016 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball

Our deepest thanks to the 2016 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball chairs Phoebe & Bobby Tudor

GALA COMMITTEE
Chinhui and Eddie Allen
Susie and Sanford Criner
Rania and Jamal Daniel
Nijad and Zeina Fares
Martha and Richard Finger
Jeff Fort
Cece and Mack Fowler
Diana and Russell Hawkins
Patricia P. Hubbard
Nancy Powell Moore
Franci Neely
Cynthia and Tony Petrello
Raquel and Andrew Segal
Leigh and Reggie Smith
Ping Sun and David Leebron
Marcy and Tom Wessel
Andrea and Bill White
Ann and Mathew Wolf
Cyvia and Melvyn Wolff

The 2016 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball, which took place on Saturday, February 6, at The Houstonian, was a smashing success thanks to the leadership of Ball Chairs Phoebe and Bobby Tudor. More than $412,000 was raised, exceeding the fundraising goal, with 420 guests in attendance.

Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning playwright Tony Kushner was the featured speaker. He delivered a brilliant, hilarious, self-deprecating, super-fast-paced speech written for the occasion. It wove together references to writing for the theatre, Shakespeare, poetry, the meaning of art, and family history (including growing up in Lake Charles and his lifelong connection to the Tudors and their families). Attendees gave him a standing ovation. As a thank you gift for Ball supporters and guests, book designers Cathy Hunt and Fiona McGettigan of FioCat Press created a limited-edition handmade chapbook, Homebody/Kabul: An Excerpt, autographed by Kushner.

Before dinner, three Houston writers read from their new books: Robin Davidson, Houston’s second Poet Laureate, author of the collection Luminous Other; Leah Lax, author of the memoir Uncovered: How I Left Hasidic Life and Came Home; and Matthew Salesses, author of the novel The Hundred-Year Flood.  All three writers—Inprint fellowship and prize recipients—are current students or alumni of the University of Houston Creative Writing Program and have taught Inprint writers workshops.

Following the tradition of years past, table hosts and volunteers decorated each ballroom table on different literary themes, adding spice to the evening. Table decoration themes included Angels in America and Lincoln: The Screenplay by Tony Kushner, Brundibar by Kushner and Maurice Sendak (a children’s book based on the WWII children’s opera), All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, The Little Prince, Anna Karenina, Don Quixote, Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen, and books by U.S. immigrants and writers of the African diaspora.

Special thanks to all our supporters of the 2016 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball

VISIONARY
Weatherford International

UNDERWRITERS
Judy and Marc Herzstein/Brooke and Dan Feather
Phoebe and Bobby Tudor
Mark Wawro and Melanie Gray
Nina and Michael Zilkha

BENEFACTORS
Bettie Cartwright/Anne Schlumberger
The Financial Advisory Group, Inc.
Nanette and Jerry Finger/Martha and Richard Finger
Jeff Fort
Pat L. Harris
Hughes Roch LLP/Watt Thompson & Henneman LLP
Stephanie Larsen and Bryn Kristin Larsen
Nancy Powell Moore
Sidley Austin LLP
United Airlines

SPONSORS
Christina Bryan and Trey Peacock/Katie Sammons and Terry Lohrenz
Rania and Jamal Daniel
Carolyn and Platt Davis/Diana Strassmann and Jeff Smisek
Randi Faust and Carl Herman/The Edward and Helen Oppenheimer Foundation
Rachel and Bud Frazier/Bobbi and Vic Samuels
Thompson & Knight Foundation

PATRONS
Chinhui and Eddie Allen
Amegy Bank
Robin Angly and Miles Smith
Mary and Marcel Barone
Laura and John Calaway
Claire and Robert Campbell
Mary S and Jack Dawson
Loli de Llano
Diana and Russell Hawkins
Robbi Jones
Petrello Family Foundation
Radoff Family
Louisa Stude Sarofim
Barbara and Louis Sklar
Smyser, Kaplan & Veselka LLP
Vinson & Elkins LLP
Marcia West and Ron Lewis

CONTRIBUTORS
Zach Biegun and Jeramy Blackmon/Consuelo Duroc-Danner

INDIVIDUAL VISIONARIES
Dina Alsowayel and Tony Chase
Nancy Manderson
Franci Neely
Hinda Simon

INDIVIDUAL UNDERWRITERS
Joan and Stanford Alexander
Nijad and Zeina Fares
Debbie Gary
Eleanor and Dan Gilbane
Sis and Hasty Johnson
Karen Pulaski/Tribute Goods

INDIVIDUAL BENEFACTORS
Bud Light/Silver Eagle Distributors
Susie and Sanford Criner
Gulchin A. Ergun and Matthew A. McBride
Cullen Geiselman
Josephine and Philip John
Linda and George Kelly
Kathryn and Jim Ketelsen
Nancy and Neal Manne
Sara and Bill Morgan
Becky and Ralph S. O’Connor
Regina Rogers
Carey Shuart
Lois and George Stark
Andrea and Bill White
Cyvia and Melvyn Wolff

INDIVIDUAL SPONSORS
Dean Burkhardt and Alison Smith
Liz and Steve Crowell
Gwendolyn Dawson and Ba Nguyen
Margaret and Alan Hill
Patricia Holmes
Laurel and David Isaak
Harriet and Truett Latimer
Victoria and Marshal Lightman
Anna Mavromatis
Rebecca McDonald
Katie Padden and Rick Evans
Hannah and Gary Rosenthal
Cara and Michael Rudelson
Leigh and Reggie Smith
Ping Sun and David Leebron
Sannam and Scott Warrender
Fabené Welch

INDIVIDUAL PATRONS
Dorothy J. Alcorn
Katharine Barthelme
Kristy and Chris Bradshaw
Shelia Dansby-Harvey
Nancy Dunlap
Cece and Mack Fowler
Lynn Goode and Harrison Williams
Alison de Lima Greene
Olive Hershey and A.C. Conrad
Amy Hertz and Ronaldo Fraga
Madeleine Callery Hussey
Elouise and Harry Jones
Rue and Ardon Judd
Poppi Massey and David McGee
Misty and Surena Matin
Patrice Baumann McKinney
The Mendelsohn Family Fund
Betty Moody
Karen and Gene Oshman
Shelly and Marty Power
Fairfax and Risher Randall
Carroll Ray
Doreen Stoller and Dan Piette
Sandy and Robin Stuart
Cynthia Toles

Highlights from the 2015 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball

Our deepest thanks to the 2015 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball Chairs Joan and Stanford Alexander, Jeff Fort, and Andrea and Bill White.

GALA COMMITTEE
Eddie and Chinhui Allen
Dean Burkhardt and Alison Smith
Bettie and Rick Carrell
Susie and Sanford Criner
Nanette and Jerry Finger
Lily and Charles C. Foster
Cece and Mack Fowler
Cullen Geiselman
Sis and Hasty Johnson
Franci Neely
Cynthia and Anthony Petrello
Nina and Michael Zilkha

The 2015 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball, which took place on Saturday, February 7, at the Houston Country Club was a huge success. More than $460,000 was raised thanks to the leadership of Ball Chairs Joan and Stanford Alexander, Jeff Fort, and Andrea and Bill White. The sold-out event was attended by 420 guests.

Before dinner three young writers delighted guests with short salon-style readings from their new books in three reading rooms: Nina McConigley, 2014 PEN Open Book Award-winning author of the story collection Cowboys and East Indians; Kimberly Meyer, author of the memoir The Book of Wanderings; and Tiphanie Yanique, author of the story collection How to Escape from a Leper Colony, the picture book I Am the Virgin Islands, and most recently the novel Land of Love and Drowning. All three are Inprint fellowship and prize recipients and alumnae of the UH Creative Writing Program.

The ballroom looked beautiful with tables decorated by table hosts and volunteers on different literary themes such as Salman Rushdie’s Luka and the Fire of Life, Karen Russell’s Vampires in the Lemon Grove, Ben Fountain’s Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, and other bookish themes.

Internationally celebrated Man Booker Prize-winning author Salman Rushdie was the featured speaker and gave a memorable after-dinner talk focusing on Eastern “wonder tales” and the importance of fiction in igniting our imagination. Attendees gave Rushdie a standing ovation after his talk.

Book designers Cathy Hunt and Fiona McGettigan of FioCat Press transformed a chapter of Rushdie’s novel The Enchantress of Florence into an elegant, limited-edition handmade chapbook as a thank-you gift for Ball supporters and guests, each autographed by Rushdie.

Special thanks to all our supporters of the 2015 Inprint Poets & Writers Ball

VISIONARIES
Jeff Fort/Sis and Hasty Johnson/
Franci Neely/Andrea and Bill White
Weatherford International, Ltd.
Nina and Michael Zilkha

UNDERWRITERS
Judy and Marc Herzstein/Brooke and Dan Feather
Mark Wawro and Melanie Gray

BENEFACTORS
Joan and Stanford Alexander
Eddie and Chinhui Allen
Robin Angly and Miles Smith
Anne S. Brown/Bettie Cartwright
Carolyn and Platt Davis
The Financial Advisory Group, Inc.
Nanette and Jerry Finger/ Martha and Richard Finger
Nene Foxhall and Steve Jetton
Lynne and Joe Hudson
Stephanie Larsen and
Bryn Kristin Larsen
Petrello Family Foundation
Radoff Family
Louisa S. Sarofim
United Airlines
Vinson & Elkins LLP
Watt Beckworth LLP/Hughes
Roch LLP

 

SPONSORS
Amegy Bank, N.A.
Luba and Alan Bigman/Eleanor and Dan Gilbane
Christina Bryan and Trey Peacock/John and Laura Calaway/Katie Sammons and Terry Lohrenz
Dean Burkhardt and Alison Smith
The Edward & Helen
Oppenheimer Foundation
Bud and Rachel Frazier/Bobbi and Vic Samuels
Pat L. Harris
Mimi Lloyd
Smyser Kaplan & Veselka, LLP

PATRONS
Mary and Marcel Barone
Travis and Suzann Broesche/Carolyn and James Robertson
Susie and Sanford Criner/Cece and Mack Fowler
Mary S and Jack Dawson
Cullen Geiselman
Diana Strassmann and Jeff Smisek
Thompson & Knight LLP

INDIVIDUAL VISIONARIES
Debbie Gary
Nancy Manderson

INDIVIDUAL UNDERWRITERS
Rania and Jamal Daniel
Jenny Elkins
J. Stephen King and Carol Noel King
Ram and Rani Seetharam

INDIVIDUAL BENEFACTORS
Elizabeth and Albert Kidd
Harriet and Truett Latimer
Regina Rogers
Carey C. Shuart
Barbara and Louis Sklar

 

INDIVIDUAL SPONSORS
Elizabeth and Steven Crowell
Patricia Holmes
Victoria and Marshal Lightman
Anna Mavromatis
Cara and Michael Rudelson
Fabené Welch

INDIVIDUAL PATRONS
Lamees Al-Ali and Nabeel Al-Amudi
Dorothy J. Alcorn
Dina Alsowayel and Tony Chase
Scott J. Atlas Philanthropic Fund
Robin and Dick Brooks
Bettie and Rick Carrell
Marcia Carter
Judy Chapman and Terrence Doody
Jessica Crutcher and Josh Grenard
Ramona Davis and Don Adams
Susie and Joe Dilg
Carolyn and Chris Dorros
Helen Winkler Fosdick
Ronaldo Fraga and Amy Hertz
Judge Vanessa Gilmore
James H. Greer
Olive Hershey and A.C. Conrad
Margaret and Alan Hill
Gloria Hui and Joiner Cartwright, Jr.
Irene and Ron Johnson
Rue and Ardon Judd
Peter and Tracy Kaestner
Nicole and Evan H. Katz
Julie and James Kemper
Isabelle and Eric Mayer
Beverly and Staman Ogilvie
Devika and Mahesh Ramchandani
Lenox and John Reed
River Oaks Bookstore
Nancy and John Sherwood
Kim and David Sterling
Doreen Stoller and Dan Piette
Sannam and Scott Warrender
Ann and Robert Weisgarber
Wallace S. Wilson