Tickets available for Mayborn Conference speakers July 22 and 23

Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - 14:52
Gilbert King
Gilbert King

What: Sheryl WuDunn, the first Asian American to win a Pulitzer Prize and co-author of A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity, and Gilbert King, winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction, both speaking at the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference sponsored by the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism at the University of North Texas.

When: King is the featured speaker at the conference's Southwest Soiree at 5:30 p.m. July 22 (Friday). WuDunn will speak during the conference's Literary Lights Dinner at 6 p.m. July 23 (Saturday).

Where: King's presentation is at Austin Ranch banquet hall, 2009 Anderson Gibson Road in Grapevine behind the Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center. WuDunn's presentation is in the International Ballroom of the Hilton, which is located at 1800 Highway 26 East in Grapevine, Texas.

Cost:$60 for Southwest Soiree; $100 for Literary Lights Dinner. Cost includes dinner. Reservations required in advance at the conference website.

Contact: Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference at 940-565-4564 or

DENTON (UNT), Texas -- Tickets are available to the general public for two of the presentations by Pulitzer Prize winning speakers at this year's Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference.

Gilbert King, who received the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction for Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys and the Dawn of a New America, will speak July 22 (Friday) during the conference's Southwest Soiree dinner. WuDunn, a former New York Times reporter who shares the 1990 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting with her husband, former New York Times Beijing bureau chief Nicholas Kristof, will be the featured speaker during the conference's Literary Lights Dinner July 23 (Saturday).

Both events will take place at the Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center, 1800 Highway 26 East in Grapevine.

The Southwest Soiree, which includes a buffet dinner, begins at 5:30 p.m. on July 22 (Friday) at the Hilton's Austin Ranch banquet hall, located behind the hotel at 2009 Anderson Gibson Road. King will speak beginning at 7:30 p.m. and sign copies of his book after his presentation.

The Literary Lights Dinner begins at 6 p.m. on July 23 (Saturday) in the International Ballroom on the second floor of the Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center. WuDunn's presentation at 8 p.m. will be a conversation with Krys Boyd, host and managing editor of "Think" on KERA-FM. WuDunn will sign copies of the books she co-wrote with Kristoff after the presentation.

Tickets for the Southwest Soiree are $60 and tickets for the Literary Lights Dinner are $100. All tickets must be reserved by July 15 (Friday) at the conference website.

The Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference is sponsored each year by the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism, part of the University of North Texas' Frank W. and Sue Mayborn School of Journalism. Both King and WuDunn were selected as speakers to follow the theme of this year's conference, "Pulitzers: A Century of Excellence: People, Politics & Public Affairs."

In addition to winning a Pulitzer Prize, Devil in the Grove was named the runner up for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize and was a finalist for the Chautauqua Prize and the Edgar Award. King's other book is The Execution of Willie Francis: Race, Murder, and the Search for Justice in the American South. He has written about Supreme Court history and the death penalty for the New York Times and Washington Post, and he was a featured contributor to Smithsonian magazine's history blog.

WuDunn became the first Asian American to win a Pulitzer Prize when she and Kristoff were recognized for their reporting of what was later called the Tiananmen Square Massacre of June 3-4, 1989. WuDunn had received her press credentials and joined Kristoff as a reporter in the New York Times' Beijing shortly before April 1989, when university students began occupying Beijing's Tiananmen Square. The pro-democracy protesters were peacefully calling for political and economic reform in China. The demonstration came to a violent end weeks later when the Chinese government sent tanks and heavily armed troops to clear the square, resulting in hundreds of deaths.

After receiving their Pulitzer Prize, WuDunn and Kristoff covered developing nations in Africa, Asia and the Middle East for the New York Times. They later wrote Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, after discovering the suffering in the daily lives of poor women. The book was the basis for a popular documentary series on PBS.

WuDunn's latest book, co-authored with Kristof, is A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity, published in 2014. A Path Appears was turned into a three-part PBS documentary.

For more information, contact the conference organizers at 940-565-4564 or

Note to editors: Photos of Gilbert King and Sheryl WuDunn may be downloaded here and here.