Founding Friends

Founding Friends is an adjunct group of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation run by board members Willee Lewis and Katherine Field Stephen. Founding Friends members gain access to literary luncheons featuring prominent writers, as well as fun gatherings where members can get acquainted. Eight luncheons are held throughout the year, culminating in an evening event in June.

All donations to Founding Friends support the PEN/Faulkner Award, one of the foremost awards for American literature, our Literary Conversation events, and Writers in Schools, which brings writers and free copies of their books to more than 2,000 public and public charter high school students in the District of Columbia.

If you would like to join Founding Friends, you can make your donation here. Renewals will be based on the month a member joined. Email with any questions, or call our office at 202-898-9063. Thank you for your support!

Upcoming Luncheons

January 31st, 2019 at 12pm
Elliot Ackerman, Waiting for Eden

ELLIOT ACKERMAN is the author of the novels Waiting for EdenDark at the Crossing, which was a finalist for the National Book Award, and Green on Blue. His writings have appeared in Esquire, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and The New York Times Magazine, among other publications, and his stories have been included in The Best American Short Stories and The Best American Travel Writing. He is both a former White House Fellow and Marine, and served five tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, where he received the Silver Star, the Bronze Star for Valor, and the Purple Heart. He divides his time between New York City and Washington, D.C.

A slim heartbreaker about a war veteran who reflects on his troubled, secretive marriage.Entertainment Weekly

A classic triangle story of love and friendship, a ghost story, a captivity narrative, and a study of human endurance . . . all of it easily read in one sitting . . . Ackerman’s novel quietly suggests that America itself is a ghost story, and we are all in the act of waiting for Eden.” —Brian Turner, Washington Post

Join us for this fascinating luncheon, featuring Elliot Ackerman, on January 31st! 

RSVP to Willee Lewis at