Known for his work as an actor, author, lecturer, and former associate director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, Mr. Penn will kick off the 2023 ACTFL Annual Convention and World Languages Expo as the opening general session keynote speaker on Friday, November 17, 2023. He is recognized for his starring roles in television and movies, as well as his appointed roles as part of the Obama administration. Born to Hindu Indian Gujarati immigrant parents, he is an advocate for humanities education and a champion of the importance of international education to foster global relationships.
This year’s Closing Keynote speaker is Emmy Award-winning storyteller Sarah Eagle Heart. Ms. Eagle Heart is a member of the Oglala Lakota Nation, where she learned Native American storytelling traditions, which she uses to raise awareness, advocate for Indigenous People, and fight for social justice. She enjoys utilizing innovative approaches and partnerships to amplify stories from grassroots communities, artists, and movement leaders, and will share how language can transform hearts on Sunday, November 19, 2023.
“We are extremely excited to present both Kal Penn and Sarah Eagle Heart as our 2023 ACTFL Annual Convention keynoters.” said Howie Berman, executive director of ACTFL. “They are unique figures who bring a depth and breadth of lived experience, passion, and a talent for storytelling that will captivate our attendees in Chicago.”
The ACTFL 2023 Annual Convention and World Languages Expo will take place November 17-19 at McCormick Place West in Chicago, Il.