Since its launch in 2009, the CWA Speakers Bureau has cemented itself as one of the organization’s marquee offerings. Speakers have reported steady success in securing event bookings, earning money, and selling books. Event programmers, meanwhile, have increasingly told us that the CWA Speakers Bureau Menu serves a helpful resource as they plan their event calendars. In August, we will finalize and post the NEW 2014-2015 CWA Speakers Bureau Menu to the CWA homepage. More importantly, we will distribute a hard copy of the menu to over 220 Chicago area libraries and venues. The planning for that menu begins now. (Note: the Speakers Bureau is only open to active CWA members. If you have a colleague who wishes to be included, he or she will first need to join CWA.) Here are the details:

  • Payment and listing are active for one calendar year from the date of the menu’s posting.
  • You must submit your program profile/menu listing electronically in the text of an email (not as an attachment) to by JULY 11. This is a firm deadline with no exceptions. Your menu listing should follow the Speakers Bureau’s standard format, which is:


“Title of the program” by Presenter’s Name

Maximum 75-word description of the program being offered. Note if the program includes handouts, booklets, Q&A, etc. (Intended audience; Length in minutes; Fee and any special requests, such as plus travel expenses or permission to sell books) References: List up to two references – name and contact info. These individuals should be able to comment on your work as a presenter, ideally of the program you are proposing. Website: If available, list your website or blog address Contact Info: Provide your phone number(s) and email   Here is a specific example:  

“Chicago Genealogy 101” by Grace DuMelle

Learn the challenges of searching for your Windy City relations, such as scores of unindexed newspapers, from Grace DuMelle, author of Finding Your Chicago Ancestors and head of Heartland Historical Research Service. Discover lesser-known sources for family historians – fire insurance maps, probate cases, and inquest records – that can open a window into your ancestors’ world. Includes handouts, Q&A. (Adults; 60 min; $150 with permission to sell books) References: Terri Meyer, Ela Area Library District, (847) 438-3433, Website: Contact:, (312) 842-8933   Two important notes:

  • All presentations are subject to CWA approval.
  • There is no guarantee you will get booked for an event. The CWA is a vehicle to promote your program in an effective, credible light. If an event programmer wishes to schedule your program, he/she will contact you directly. It is your responsibility to follow up, arrange the event details, set the fee, etc. in a professional manner. The CWA does not function as an intermediary or actively line up programs for you.

  If you have any questions, please contact CWA Speakers Bureau director Daniel P. Smith at (708) 717-6126 or

Share Facebook   Share on Twitter

Back to Write City Blog