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You’ve Heard of NPR Weekend Host, Scott Simon, But Did You Know…

Did you know that Scott Simon is a longtime friend of the Chicago Public Library Foundation and moderator of the honoree conversation at the Carl Sandburg Literary Awards Dinner since 2011?

In keeping with the event’s tradition, Simon moderated a highly anticipated conversation between this year’s Carl Sandburg Literary Award recipients Margaret Atwood and Dave Eggers.  But before handing the Cubs-loving author the mic, we thought we’d ask him a few questions of our own! Follow along to see how this Chicago author, has made the Chicago Public Library Foundation a part of his career in writing, broadcasting and as of late… a new way to celebrate the 2016 Cubs win.

Scott Simon (left) with the 2017 Carl Sandburg Literary Award recipients Margaret Atwood and Dave Eggers

Your career has quite obviously held a cornerstone in humanity and philanthropy — how did you become so invested in helping others?

“God, I never thought of it as that,” he chuckled.  “I’d always go where the stories would mean a lot.  Always tried to make space for that.”

What is your favorite Library Program?

“The Summer Learning Challenge. A lot of kids like the structure of school — so providing that is an important service.”  Adding that if he was still a teenager, he’s likely be interested in the 3-D printing lab. 

What do you think are the Library’s greatest value adds to the city of Chicago?

“Libraries are important meeting spots in the city,” he started.  “They open ideas and exposure to other people, which is really important. Especially for youngsters that don’t have a perfect home life.”

You’ve had an incredibly successful career — how does that compare to being a long time Cubs fan and seeing them win

(L-R): Caroline Richard, Scott Simon, and Library Foundation President & CEO, Rhona Frazin

the World Series?

“No comparison whatsoever,” he said. “Complete rapture.  Winning was something I hoped for since I was 3 years-old. Even at 3 years-old, I knew this was improbable.”

If you had one thing to share with aspiring writers or broadcasters, what would it be?

“Read.  Read the best stuff you can.”
Scott Simon joined us on Wednesday, October 11 at the Carl Sandburg Literary Awards Dinner as this year’s honored moderator. His most recent work, My Cubs: A Love Story, came out earlier this year serves as missive and love letter to the game’s most troubled and triumphant team, the Chicago Cubs. To learn more about the author himself, visit To learn more about the Carl Sandburg Literary Awards Dinner, click here.