Our 2017 Speakers

Deborah Harkness
All Souls Trilogy Author, History Professor

A student and scholar of history, recipient of multiple fellowships, award winning wine blogger, and New York Times best selling author, Deborah Harkness is currently professor of European history and the history of science at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Her books include two works of non-fiction: John Dee’s Conversations with Angels: Cabala, Alchemy, and the End of Nature, and The Jewel House: Elizabethan London and the Scientific Revolution. Deborah Harkness's career in fiction began with A Discovery of Witches, followed by Shadow of Night, and The Book of Life, the third book of the All Souls Trilogy. Over two million copies of the All Souls books have been sold in the United States, with publications following in 38 countries, and the series is now in development with Bad Wolf, who is adapting it for television.

Colleen Madden
Author, Illustrator

The fourth kid in a family of eight, Colleen Madden made it through childhood pretending to be a wookie sidekick to a space princess and drawing in her cardboard box art studio. Colleen spent some time acting and training at The Second City in Chicago, then went on to graduate from a small liberal arts school in Massachusetts. Colleen is currently working on her first titles for publication, as an author/illustrator. Colleen lives and works in the Philadelphia area.

Claire Baldwin
Author, Freelance Editor

Claire Baldwin is a freelance editor and publishing consultant who has worked in the book industry for the last fifteen years. The majority of these were spent at Headline Publishing Group where, as Associate Publisher, Claire commissioned and published a wide range of fiction, including Deborah Harkness’s bestselling All Souls trilogy. Based in London’s East End in the UK, Claire now works with authors, literary agents and publishers worldwide, most recently co-authoring and leading the production for the upcoming insider’s guide to the trilogy, The World of All Souls.

Jill Hough
Author, Executive Director

Jill Hough has a Ph.D. in American History from the University of California at Davis, where she met Deb Harkness when they were both graduate students there. They bonded over their mutual love of history and horseback-riding. After Deb sold A Discovery of Witches to Viking/Penguin in 2010, she hired Jill to help her manage some of the many new responsibilities that accompanied becoming a best-selling author. When Jill isn’t answering emails for Team Harkness or working on a writing assignment for The World of All Souls, she’s usually doing chores on her family’s farm, or neglecting her chores and curling up with a good book.

Lisa Halttunen
Author, Editor

Lisa Halttunen graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a degree in European history from Brown University, and then received a Masters in Library Science from Columbia. After working as a librarian for a few years, she did a brief stint in publishing and then switched to technical writing. She currently works at QuintilesIMS, where she creates online help for company products. Since the early drafts of A Discovery of Witches, she has also worked as one of Deborah Harkness’s several editors. For the curious, she simply started editing and then asked if it was all right. She recommends this approach for anyone who really wants a particular job. Her academic background proved invaluable for her duties as recorder of the minutiae of the All Souls world, tracking vampire birth and death dates and the ever-changing color of Diana Bishop’s hair. In the last year, she’s been privileged to work with the wonderful team of The World of All Souls. She has it on the best authority that she is a vampire.

Shelli Carter
Biologist, Professor

Shelli Carter has a PhD in biology with a focus on molecular biology from the University of Alabama and a MS in education with a focus in instructional design and technology from Purdue University. After completing her PhD, she worked for a private forensic company, as a consultant for the MITRE Corporation, and as a research scientist for the US government. She’s currently an Associate Professor of Science at the Colorado Technical University, College of General Education & Psychology, while also teaching for UA’s LifeTrack program. As part of LifeTrack, Shelli has designed and taught a course on “The Science of the Supernatural,” which examines whether there is any scientific or medical basis behind creatures such as Diana, Matthew, and Hamish.

Richard Campanella
Geographer, Author, Professor

Prof. Richard Campanella, a geographer with the Tulane School of Architecture, is the author of nine books and over 150 articles on the geography, history and culture of the New Orleans region and related topics. His research, which integrates the mapping sciences and spatial analyses with the social sciences and humanities, has been praised by The New York Review of Books, Journal of Southern History, Urban History, Places, Louisiana History, The Journal of the Abraham Lincoln Association, and other forums. The only two-time winner of the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities Book of the Year Award (2006, 2009), Campanella has also received the Tulane Honors Professor of the Year Award (2016), Louisiana Literary Award (2015), the HNOC Williams Prize for Louisiana History (2011), Mortar Board Award for Excellence in Teaching (2010), the Monroe Fellowship (2011-Present), and the Hannah Arendt Prize for Scholarship in the Public Interest (2014). In 2016, the Government of France named Campanella Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Palmes Academiques (Knight in the Order of the Academic Palms). His books include: Cityscapes of New Orleans, The Photojournalism of Del Hall, Lost New Orleans, Bourbon Street: A History, Lincoln in New Orleans: The 1828-1831, Flatboat Voyages and Their Place in History, and more.