Literary Voices® is a fundraising dinner that benefits the Library Endowment Trust, by providing additional funding for programs, materials, and services for the Metropolitan Library System of Oklahoma County. Since 2003 the dinner event has featured presentations by best-selling authors. The event also honors community members with the Lee B. Brawner Lifetime Achievement Award. The award is named in memory of its first recipient, the late Lee B. Brawner, who served as the Executive Director of the Metropolitan Library System from 1971 until 1999. The award is given to recognize those who have made outstanding contributions to libraries and literacy in Oklahoma.
2019 Author & Speaker
Kristin Hannah is an award-winning and bestselling author of more than 20 novels including the international blockbuster, The Nightingale, Winter Garden, Night Road, and Firefly Lane.
Her novel, The Nightingale, has been published in 43 languages and is currently in movie production at TriStar Pictures, which also optioned her novel, The Great Alone. Her novel, Home Front has been optioned for film by 1492 Films (produced the Oscar-nominated The Help) with Chris Columbus attached to direct.
Kristin is a former-lawyer-turned writer who lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband. Her novel, Firefly Lane, became a runaway bestseller in 2009, a touchstone novel that brought women together, and The Nightingale, in 2015 was voted a best book of the year by Amazon, Buzzfeed, iTunes, Library Journal, Paste, The Wall Street Journal and The Week. Additionally, the novel won the coveted Goodreads and People’s Choice Awards. The audiobook of The Nightingale won the Audiobook of the Year Award in the fiction category.
With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah captures the epic panorama of WWII and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war. The Nightingale tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, by ideals, passion and circumstance, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love, and freedom in German-occupied, war-torn France–a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women.
In the turbulent summer of 1974, Kate Mularkey has accepted her place at the bottom of the eighth-grade social food chain. Then, to her amazement, the “coolest girl in the world” moves in across the street and wants to be her friend. For thirty years, Tully and Kate buoy each other through life, weathering the storms of friendship—jealousy, anger, hurt, resentment. They think they’ve survived it all until a single act of betrayal tears them apart…and puts their courage and friendship to the ultimate test.
Like many couples, Michael and Jolene have to face the pressures of everyday life—children, careers, bills, chores—even as their twelve-year marriage is falling apart. Then an unexpected deployment sends Jolene deep into harm’s way and leaves defense attorney Michael at home, unaccustomed to being a single parent to their two girls. When tragedy strikes, Michael must face his darkest fear and fight a battle of his own–for everything that matters to his family.
Previous Literary Voices Speakers
Lee B. Brawner
Lee B. Brawner
Lee B. Brawner served as executive director of the Metropolitan Library System from 1971 until 1999. During his 28-year tenure as director, the library system grew from 11 facilities to 17 stretching across Oklahoma County. Lee was a champion of intellectual freedom, winning the 1998 Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Award in the Education category for “his devotion to the principles of intellectual freedom.”
Prior to his career in Oklahoma City, Lee worked as a librarian in Texas at both the Dallas and Waco public libraries. He held an MLS from George Peabody College, Nashville. In 2003 he received the Lifetime Achievement Award, which was named after him, from the Library Endowment Trust.
A frequent contributor to library literature, in 1996 Lee co-authored the book Determining Your Public Library’s Future Size: A Needs Assessment and Planning Model with architect Don Beck. As principal consultant of Brawner Associates, a consulting firm founded after his retirement from active library directorship, Lee conferred with over 100 libraries and participated in library studies and assessments, including planning and programming for over 140 library buildings across the United States.
Active in professional, civic and cultural organizations, Lee received the 1997 Pioneer Award for providing the vision and leadership that have created a library system valued locally and respected by library professionals throughout America.
2019 Lee B. Brawner Award Recipient
Clifford Hudson spent 35 years of his career at Sonic Corp., an Oklahoma City-based, publicly held company that owns, operates and franchises SONIC Drive-In restaurants. Most recently, he was Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of this public company with more than 3,500 franchised and company-operated drive-in restaurants. He left the company upon its sale in December 2018 and joined the law firm Crowe & Dunlevy as Of Counsel in the firm’s Oklahoma City office.
Hudson graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a B.A. in History, from which he also received in 2011 an honorary doctoral degree in humane letters. He holds a J.D. from Georgetown University, where he served as Chair of the Board of Visitors from 2013-2016. In 2014, Georgetown University awarded him the John Carroll Award, its highest alumni recognition.
Hudson served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), a presidential appointment, from 1994-2001. He served as Chairman of the Oklahoma City School Board from 2001-2008, a position created in 2000 as part of a $530 million turnaround of a 40,000 student, inner-city Oklahoma City Public School system, for which he received the 2012 David T. Kearns Award for Excellence and Innovation in Education. He served as Trustee of the Ford Foundation (New York) from 2006-2017 and is a past Chair of the Board of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.