Meet our speakers for 2020

Keynote Speakers

Sarah Broom Friday - Sarah Broom
Sarah M. Broom is the author of the 2019 National Book Award Winner and instant New York Times bestseller The Yellow House, a brilliant, haunting and unforgettable memoir about the inexorable pull of home and family, set in a shotgun house in New Orleans East. Heralded as “one of the year’s best memoirs…an urgent meditation on the American dream” (Entertainment Weekly), “a remarkable journey” (Robin Roberts, Good Morning America), and “an instantly essential text, examining the past, present and possible future of the city of New Orleans, and of America writ large” (cover review of the New York Times Book Review), Sarah’s debut has been dubbed a must-read book in over 15 publications including the LA Times, the Washington Post, Vanity Fair, NPR, and TIME.

Sarah’s previous work has appeared in the New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, The Oxford American, and O, The Oprah Magazine among others. A native New Orleanian, she received her Masters in Journalism from the University of California, Berkeley in 2004. She was awarded a Whiting Foundation Creative Nonfiction Grant in 2016 and was a finalist for the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Creative Nonfiction in 2011. She has also been awarded fellowships at Djerassi Resident Artists Program and The MacDowell Colony. She lives in New York state.
Major Garrett Saturday - Major Garrett
Major Garrett was named CBS News' chief Washington correspondent in December 2018. As chief Washington correspondent, Garrett reports for all CBS News broadcasts and platforms. Garrett is also the host of "The Takeout," a weekly multi-platform interview show on politics, policy and pop culture available on CBSN, top radio stations across the country, and all podcast platforms.

From 2012 until 2018, Garrett served as the Network's chief White House correspondent. While covering the White House for CBS News, Garrett reported extensively on presidential actions to confront ISIS, Ebola, nuclear negotiations with Iran and U.S.-European efforts to confront Russia in the standoff over Ukraine. On domestic issues, Garrett reported on the Obama administration's handling of the health care website rollout, numerous policy failures at the Veterans Administration and the president's ongoing efforts in 2014 to address racial strife and criminal justice reform. He has traveled with the president to Asia, Europe and the Middle East.

In 2015-2016, Garrett spent 16 months on the road covering the Republican presidential campaign, including every GOP debate, both major party conventions and every day of the general election. During the transition, Garrett broke numerous cabinet appointments, including Jeff Sessions as attorney general. Garrett has covered every major domestic and foreign policy story of the trump administration.

Before joining CBS News as chief White House correspondent, Garrett was a fixture during CBS News' coverage of Campaign 2012 through a partnership with the National Journal, where he was chief White House correspondent. He co-hosted the network's coverage of the 2011 South Carolina Republican Primary debate alongside "CBS Evening News" anchor and managing editor Scott Pelley and offered analysis for every 2012 general election presidential debate.

Prior to National Journal, Garrett was the Chief White House correspondent for Fox News. During his eight years at Fox, Garrett also covered two presidential elections, Congress, the war in Iraq and other major stories. Before joining Fox News, Garrett was a White House correspondent for CNN during the administrations of George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Previously, he was a senior editor and congressional correspondent for U.S. News and World Report, where he reported on Congress and the impeachment of President Clinton. He was a congressional reporter for The Washington Times (1990-95) and the newspaper's deputy national editor (1995-97). Earlier in his career, Garrett was a reporter for The Houston Post, Las Vegas Review-Journal and the Amarillo Globe-News.

Garrett is the author of four books: "Common Cents," with former Rep. Tim Penny (D-Minnesota) Little, Brown Publisher, 1995; "The 15 Biggest Lies in Politics," St. Martin's 1999; "The Enduring Revolution," Crown Forum 2005 and and "Mr. Trump's Wild Ride," St. Martin's, 2018. Garrett graduated in 1984 from the University of Missouri with degrees in journalism and political science. A native of San Diego, California, he lives in Washington, D.C.
Gene Weingarten Sunday - Gene Weingarten
Gene Weingarten is a Washington Post journalist. He writes long-form stories as well as Below the Beltway, the weekly syndicated humor column. His previous books include I’m With Stupid: One Man. One Woman. 10,000 Years of Misunderstanding Between the Sexes Cleared Right Up (with Gina Barreca); The Hypochondriac’s Guide to Life. And Death; Old Dogs: Are the Best Dogs; and The Fiddler in the Subway, a collection of his best-known work. Weingarten is the only two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing, for examining the phenomenon of parents who accidentally leave their children to bake to death in hot cars, and for an experiment in which he arranged for famed violinist Joshua Bell to busk incognito outside a Metro station in Washington, to see if anyone would notice.

He lives in Washington, D.C.