Texas Book Festival Announces New CEO
Fundraising expert Marianne DeLeón steps into leadership role
By Richard Whittaker,
5:00PM, Wed. Nov. 29, 2023
Having wrapped up its 28th annual event last month, the Texas Book Festival has announced that fundraising expert Marianne DeLeón will become the literary nonprofit's new CEO, effective Dec. 1.
She will be the permanent replacement for former CEO and Executive Director Lois Kim, who stepped down in April to become chief development officer at the Harry Ransom Center (in the intervening period, TBF Deputy Director Dalia Azim has been serving as interim executive director).
DeLeón has been a fixture in Austin's nonprofit scene for nearly two decades, beginning as development director for Equality Texas, and then holding positions with homelessness charity Green Doors Inc., AIDS Services of Austin, Girl Scouts of Central Texas, and most recently spending five years with Pease Park Conservancy, first as director of development and then as chief revenue officer.
The announcement stressed her background as a fund raiser, including having more than doubled the conservancy's annual budget and tripling its staff during her tenure. Texas Book Festival board chair Gigi Edwards Bryant said the board members "couldn't be more thrilled to have her on board. Marianne comes with a strong background in leadership, fundraising and relationship development.”
DeLeón called her new position "an absolute honor. It affords me the opportunity to lead a talented team that is dedicated to promoting literacy and uniting communities through the power of storytelling, values that resonate deeply with my own passions for literature and education."
The Texas Book Festival will return for its 29th year in November 2024.