Susanne Jaffe

Susanne Jaffe

From July 2001 – December 2016 Susanne served as the Executive and Creative Director of Thurber House, the nonprofit literary center in Columbus, Ohio. She was responsible for all adult and children’s programming, including all author events; fund-raising; community engagement with other arts organizations. She revitalized the Thurber Prize for American Humor, and for taking Thurber House from a deficit of $200,000 to a positive budget of $600,000. Before that, she was an editor and executive in New York City trade publishing houses such as Simon & Schuster and Random House, working with a variety of authors and genres. The author of several published works, fiction and nonfiction; also ghost-writing and freelance editing.

Tradition of Humor in Ohio

Ohio has a roster of talent in the humor category unlike just about any other state. Why, you might ask? Is it the inherent humor of being neither-coastal? Does that make someone see humor as a way to get through bleak winters and endless fields of corn and professional sports teams that can’t win? Or is the cause of this rich repository of wit as simple as wonderful talents thriving in the heartland of America since the heartland is, in and of itself, pretty funny. Humor is very subjective, and this talk will discuss how the individual humorists—be it writer, cartoonist, comic—always bring their homeland—their heart-land—to their work, and that means that tomorrow’s humorists are working right here, right now in Ohio.

Arts in Ohio: A Thriving Scene

As our cities continue to grow; as our arts offerings continue to garner local, state and national attention for their quality and talent, Ohio will become home to ever more opportunities to attend, learn about, participate in, and simply enjoy a diversity of disciplines including theatre, dance, visual arts, music, literature. This talk will examine a selection of organizations in each of these discipline. The future of the arts in Ohio is golden with possibility because of the engagement today with the poets and cellists and dancers of tomorrow.


To Schedule a presentation , Please contact:

Susanne Jaffe sj@susannejaffe.com

Speaker Applications

If your organization would like to present a speaker, first directly contact the speaker to confirm program dates and times. After you have confirmed scheduling details, submit a speaker request form to the Ohio Humanities at least six weeks before the presentation takes place. Upon Ohio Humanities approval, we’ll a send you a packet with publicity materials and ask you to pay the appropriate application fee to the Ohio Humanities. Groups are limited to three Speakers Bureau programs per year.

Speakers Fee Structure

Non-profit organizations with an annual budget under $150,000 pay a fee of $50.00

Non-profit organizations with an annual budget over $150,000 pay a fee of $250.00

Schools (including colleges or universities) and corporate or private entities pay a fee of $400.00

***Funding for Speakers Bureau is currently committed and we are no longer accepting applications. If you are interested in booking a speaker directly, without Ohio Humanities funding, you are encouraged to contact the speaker directly with inquiries. The Bureau will reopen in September 2019. If you have any questions, please call Program Coordinator Sam Chase at 614.461.7802 or email at schase@ohiohumanities.org.***