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Nicholas Kristof & Sheryl WuDunn

Nicholas Kristof & Sheryl WuDunn

Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalists & Human Rights Advocates


Husband-and-wife duo Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn were the first married couple to win a Pulitzer in journalism and have written a series of best-selling books together as well as appeared in television documentaries of their books. Their No. 1 best-seller, Half the Sky, called "electrifying" by The Washington Post, draws a compelling picture of the trials and triumphs of women struggling worldwide for opportunity and equality. They followed that with A Path Appears, again both a best-selling book and PBS documentary, exploring how people can make a difference at home and abroad. In their new book, Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope (2020), they issue a plea to address the crisis in working-class America, while also focusing on solutions to mend a half century of governmental failure. Read More >

A two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for The New York Times, Kristof is often called a "reporter’s reporter" for his activism and was the subject of the 2009 Sundance Film Festival documentary Reporter. He has lived on four continents, reported on six, and traveled to 140 countries, all 50 states, every Chinese province, and every main Japanese island in order to offer a compassionate glimpse into global health, poverty, and gender in the developing world. As part of the Half the Sky documentary series, Kristof travelled around the world along with celebrity activists America Ferrera, Diane Lane, Eva Mendes, Meg Ryan, Gabrielle Union, and Olivia Wilde to meet inspiring individuals confronting the global oppression of women. He is currently a candidate for Governor of Oregon.

The first Asian American to win a Pulitzer Prize, WuDunn is a business executive, entrepreneur, and best-selling author. She has special expertise in China, entrepreneurship, impact investing and helping companies do both well and good. As an investment banker, she currently helps growth companies, including those operating in the fields of technology, healthcare, entertainment and media. She helped launch the development of multimedia efforts for Half the Sky, creating an effective marketing strategy that included online and mobile games, the PBS documentary series, and outreach with dozens of NGOs.

Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn love telling stories that surprise and persuade. Read Less ^

Speech Topics

Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope

Based on their new, critically acclaimed book, Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope, Kristof and WuDunn share a harrowing account and detailed look into the epidemic of depression, unemployment, poverty and addiction that is plaguing the working class across America – and the government's failure to address it. Available to speak separately or together, Nick and Sheryl are passionate about giving a voice to the voiceless and telling the hard truths that need to be told. Known for their moving storytelling and incomparable insights into the events that shape our world, they leave audiences inspired to drive change, take on challenges and make a difference.

Healthcare on a Tightrope: The Imperative for Equity

Nick Kristof and Sheryl Wu Dunn’s New York Times bestseller, Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope has been called an “absolute must-read for anyone working in the field of healthcare, public policy and public health.” Weaving sobering data about America’s explosion of addiction, chronic disease, and suicide with the moving personal stories of Kristof’s own hometown in rural Oregon and their knowledge of healthcare around the world, the Pulitzer Prize winners provide an unflinching look at the root causes of diseases of despair and America’s declining life expectancy. Their multifaceted solutions champion public health approaches that include greater access to healthcare, understanding the social determinants of health, childhood education, addiction treatment vs. incarceration and addressing the connection between adverse childhood episodes and chronic conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. Appearing individually or together, they place human faces on the impact of approaches and policies, providing a hopeful way forward from a crisis of the vulnerable to greater equity, access and health.

A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity

Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn explore a revolution now underway in philanthropy, giving individuals much greater chance to have impact at home and abroad. Drawing from their best-selling book and PBS documentary, they look at donations, volunteering and advocacy, as well as hybrids between non-profits and for-profits. They cite the revolution in evidence-based interventions, such as early childhood education – and even introduces rats that have been trained to sniff out land mines as an example of innovation.

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide

Drawing from their best-selling book, Half the Sky, which became an acclaimed PBS series filmed in 10 countries, Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn contend that the greatest moral challenge of the 21st century, akin to fighting slavery in the 19th century or totalitarianism in the 20th century, is gender inequity around the world. They explore the kinds of repression women face, including sexual violence, early marriage, female genital mutilation, forced prostitution and maternal mortality, which claims one woman every 90 seconds. They also identify solutions in health care, education and economic empowerment for women and girls. Above all, they note that there is a huge gain to be had if a society educates girls and ushers those educated women into the labor force. Kristof and WuDunn also explore areas in which the West has more to do at home to create gender equity, including domestic violence and sex trafficking.