ACRL 2023 Keynote Speakers Announced

ACRL announces its celebrated lineup of keynote speakers for the ACRL 2023 Conference, “Forging the Future,” to be held March 15- 18, 2023, in Pittsburgh. Be challenged and inspired by ACRL’s thought-provoking speakers as they share their work as journalists, podcasters, authors, and activists.

Opening Keynote, March 15, 2023 – Rebecca Nagle, Author and Podcaster

Rebecca Nagle is an award-winning advocate, writer, and citizen of the Cherokee Nation. Her writing about Native representation and tribal sovereignty has been featured in The Washington Post, The Guardian, USA Today, Teen Vogue, The Huffington Post, and more. In season one, as the host of the chart-topping podcast This Land, Nagle told the story of one Supreme Court case about tribal land in Oklahoma, the small-town murder that started it, and the surprising connection to her own family history. In This Land’s second season, which debuted in August 2021, Nagle takes listeners through the 40-year history of the Indian Child Welfare Act.

In addition to her work towards Native American representation and the This Land podcast, Nagle lends her voice to fighting violence against women. She is the co-founder of FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture, which spoofed Victoria’s Secret underwear to spread awareness of sexual assault, with underwear sporting messages like “NO MEANS NO.” She also spearheaded The Monument Quilt, a collection of more than 3,000 stories by survivors of sexual and intimate partner violence and our allies, written, painted, and stitched onto red fabric. With her years of organizing and advocacy work, Nagle empowers her audiences to build community advocacy movements that are diverse and inclusive.

Nagle recently received The American Mosaic Journalism Prize, an unrestricted cash prize of $100,000 per recipient that is awarded to freelance journalists for excellence in long-form, narrative, or deep reporting about underrepresented and/or misrepresented groups in the American landscape.

Closing Keynote, March 18, 2023 – Heather McGhee, Public Policy Advocate and Author

Heather McGhee designs and promotes solutions to inequality in America. Over her career in public policy, McGhee has crafted legislation, testified before Congress, and helped shape presidential campaign platforms. Her book The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together spent 10 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list and was longlisted for the National Book Award and Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction. She has shared her opinions, writing, and research in numerous outlets, including the Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Politico, MSNBC, and National Public Radio.

For nearly two decades, McGhee helped build the non-partisan “think and do” tank Demos, serving four years as president. Under her leadership, Demos moved their original idea for “debt-free college” into the center of the 2016 presidential debate, argued before the Supreme Court to protect voting rights in January 2018, helped win pro-voter reforms in five states over two years, provided expert testimony to Congressional committees, including a Supreme Court confirmation hearing in 2017, and led the research campaigns behind successful wage increases for low-paid workers on federal contracts, as well as at McDonalds, Walmart and other chain retailers.

McGhee currently serves as a Visiting Lecturer in Urban Studies at the City University of New York’s School of Labor and Urban Studies and has held visiting positions at Yale University’s Brady-Johnson Grand Strategy Program and the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics.

Additional details about the ACRL 2023 Conference are available on the conference website. Conference registration opens in September 2022. The deadline for lightning talk, poster session, roundtable discussion, and virtual conference presentation proposals is October 13, 2022. Scholarship applications are due October 14, 2022.

For more information about ACRL 2023, contact ACRL Conference Manager Tory Ondrla at