Peninsula Arts & Letters

 The literary events "are invaluable and your leadership enriches our entire community.” – Anna Eshoo, United States Congresswoman

Literary living room for Stanford and Silicon Valley intellectuals” – San Francisco Chronicle


Peninsula Arts & Letters is a new non-profit forum that offers lectures, panel discussions, on-stage interviews, and educational workshops.  It was formed in Spring 2013 by transferring the awards-winning events program from Kepler’s Books into a new non-profit organization with a goal to expand the programming activities with new revenue sources including admission tickets, memberships, tax-deductible contributions, and corporate sponsorships.  Kepler’s is the first bookstore in the US to pioneer this innovative approach of spinning off its programming into a non-profit cultural organization with a vision of growth and sustainability.

Event Programming


Our events span the breadth of arts, culture, science, technology, and current affairs.  Following is a list of major event tracks and speakers we have hosted over the last few years:

  • Business and technology leaders:  Daniel Pink, Adam M. Grant, Seth Godin, Paul Allen, Gary Vaynerchuk, Carly Fiorina, Meg Whitman, William Davidow, William Draper
  • Historians:  Ken Burns, Sarah Vowell, T.J. Stiles, David Kennedy, H.W. Brands
  • Social commentators:  Thomas Friedman, Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins, Khaled Hosseini, Greg Mortenson, Barbara Kingsolver, Naomi Wolf, Marcus Zusak
  • Scientists and physicians:  Brian Greene, Mario Livio, Atul Gwandi, Siddartha Mukherjee, Timothy Ferris, Mary Roach, Leonard Mlodinow, Neil Shubin, Abraham Verghese
  • Celebrities and Public figures:  Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Jimmy Carter, Madeleine Albright, Barbara Walters, Caroline Kennedy, Jane Fonda, Amy Sedaris, David Sedaris, Andre Agassi, James Franco
  • Global scholars:  Noam Chomsky, Richard Dawkins, Steven Weinberg, Edward O Wilson, Leonard Susskind
  • Journalists and media figures:  Dave Barry, Calvin Trillin, Jose Antonio Vargas, Belva Davis, Simon Winchester, Tony Horwitz, Joshua Foer, Sebastian Junger, Michael Krasny
  • Educators Mary Pipher, Madeline Levine, Rosalind Wiseman
  • Novelists from around the world:  Barbara Kingsolver, Amy Tan, Isabel Allende, Salman Rushdie, Ann Patchett, Alexander McCall Smith, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Michael Chabon, Carl Hiaasen, T.C. Boyle, Joyce Carol Oates
  • Science fiction writers:  William Gibson, George R.R. Martin, Neil Gaiman, Neal Stephenson, Terry Pratchett
  • Mystery writers:  Louise Penny, Sarah Paretsky, Elizabeth George, Sue Grafton
  • Young adult authors:  Sherman Alexie, Cory Doctorow, Anthony Horowitz, John Green, Rick Riordan, Suzanne Collins, Cassandra Clare, Scott Westerfeld
  • Children's authors:  Jan Brett, Jeff Kinney, Lemony Snicket, Oliver Jeffers, Gail Carson Levine, Jennifer Holm, Jeanne du Prau, Robin Preiss Glasser



Peninsula Arts & Letters is a project of Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF).  SVCF is a nonprofit charity exempt from federal income tax under IRS section 501(c)(3).




Praveen Madan

Executive Director


Jean Forstner

Director of Programming and Operations


Pam Grange

Event Operations

Angela Mann

Event Manager


 Nicole Hughes

 Event Manager