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Illinois libraries presents the Many Lives of Kal Penn

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Tuesday 05/06 | 7-8 pm

We are thrilled to welcome Kal Penn to close out our 3rd season. Penn is an actor, writer, producer, and former Associate Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement. He is known for starring roles in Designated Survivor, House, The Namesake, the Harold & Kumar franchise, and much more.

From 2009 to 2011, Penn took a sabbatical from acting to serve as the President’s Liaison to Young Americans, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, and the Arts community. He worked on a range of issues, including the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the Affordable Care Act, arts and culture programs, and the DREAM Act. In 2012, he was a co-chair for the Obama/Biden re-election campaign and served on the President’s Committee for the Arts and Humanities.

Originally from New Jersey, Penn has an undergraduate degree in sociology, theater, film, and television from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a graduate certificate in international security from Stanford University. He has taught courses at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of California, Los Angeles.

Penn released his first book, You Can’t Be Serious, in 2021. In 2023, he wrapped production on the climate change docuseries, Getting Warmer with Kal Penn, a new comedy, Surina & Mel, and has taken two turns behind the desk of The Daily Show, following the departure of host Trevor Noah.

This event is made possible by Illinois Libraries Present, a statewide collaboration among public libraries offering premier events. ILP is funded in part by a grant awarded by the Illinois State Library, a department of the Office of Secretary of State, using funds provided by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). ILP is committed to inclusion and diversity. To request accommodations, please email illinoislibrariespresent@gmail.com

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