Seattle Arts & Lectures champions the literary arts by engaging and inspiring readers and writers of all generations in the greater Puget Sound region.


A future in which imaginative acts such as reading, writing, and creative thinking are indispensable to a curious, engaged, democratic society.


Seattle Arts & Lectures was founded in 1987 and launched its first season in 1988 with John Updike, Calvin Trillin, Donald Barthelme, Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris, Isabel Allende, and Rosamond Bernier. See our full archive of past events here.

In 1994, SAL brought the nationally-recognized Writers in the Schools to Seattle—an educational program that places local professional writers in public school classrooms to develop skills and spark student interest in reading and writing. The Poetry Series, featuring such notables as Philip Levine and Anne Carson, debuted in 2000. Hinge, inaugurated in the 2014/15 season, presents new books by and for the next generation at accessible ticket prices. In the 2015/16 season, SAL introduced Women You Need to Know (WYNK), a three-part series designed to showcase cutting-edge, thought-provoking women. It opened with the graphic novelist and Tony Award winner, Alison Bechdel. Summer Book Bingo, also launched in 2015, is a partnership with the Seattle Public Library to present a free summer reading program for adults (Kids Book Bingo, a program of SAL alone, was launched in 2017). In the 2018/19 season, SAL is debuting a three-part Journalism Series in partnership with National Book Award-winning writer and correspondent Timothy Egan and renowned journalist Sam Howe Verhovek.

As Seattle has grown in size and sophistication, SAL has kept pace and helped engage, inspire, and connect our growing community.  In 2017/18 alone, over 29,000 SAL attendees had accessible, meaningful experiences with the foremost writers and thinkers of our time through SAL programming. Our Writers in the Schools program matches accomplished creative writers with local K-12 public schools and hospitals for year-long writing residencies. In 2017/18, over 7,100 students worked with a WITS Writer-in-Residence or attended a Spotlight Author Visit to discover their authentic voices, build community, and develop writing skills that will support them throughout their lives.


Woogee Bae

Donor Relations Associate

Sarah Burns

Event & Corporate Giving Manager

Letitia Cain

Marketing Coordinator

Amanda Carrubba

Finance & Operations Director

Alicia Craven

Director of Education

Piper Daugharty

WITS Program Associate

Ruth Dickey

Executive Director

Bre’Anna Girdy

WITS Program Coordinator

Christina Gould

Patron Services Manager

Rebecca Hoogs

Associate Director

Leanne Skooglund

Development Director

Alison Stagner

Communications Manager


SAL Mascot

Board of Directors


SAL Volunteer


Behind the scenes at SAL is a corps of dedicated volunteers who contribute their time to ensure we meet our mission of sparking imaginations and bringing together people and ideas. We have a host of areas to get involved in, from ushering at our events, to assisting with mailings and other administrative tasks, to working on our annual fundraising events.

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Press + Media

Seattle Arts & Lectures Announces 2020/21 Season Featuring Yamiche Alcindor, Madeline Miller, Ibram X. Kendi, Ocean Vuong, & More

June 16, 2020

Seattle, WA—JUNE 16, 2020: Tonight, Seattle Arts & Lectures (SAL) announced their 2020/21 Season on YouTube at 5:30 PM (PDT). Subscriptions are now on sale for the 2020/21 Literary Arts Series, Journalism Series, Poetry Series, and Women You Need to Know Series, as is a 15-part Super SAL Subscription for those who want maximum SAL inspiration. Single tickets for special events are also on sale now. Four-part Create Your Own Series subscriptions will go on sale July 13, and single tickets for all events (including digital passes) will go on sale August 17. SAL also announced $10 tickets for all series events; all tickets to include streaming option.

Seattle Arts & Lectures Announces 2019/20 Youth Poet Laureate Wei-Wei Lee to Publish Her First Book on June 9, 2020

May 27, 2020

Seattle, WA—MAY 27, 2020: Seattle Arts & Lectures announces that the 2019/20 Youth Poet Laureate, Wei-Wei Lee, will publish her first collection, In the Footsteps of a Thousand Griefs, on June 9, 2020. Poetry NW Editions is the publisher. Wei-Wei will read from the book, along with members of the incoming 2020/21 Youth Poet Laureate (YPL) Cohort, in a pre-recorded online event on June 9, at 6 PM (PDT) at The event will also feature the unveiling of the 2020/21 Youth Poet Laureate. Wei-Wei’s poetry collection will be available for pre-sale at Open Books: A Poem Emporium and Elliott Bay Book Company beginning June 1, 2020.

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