Deesha Philyaw is an American author and columnist. Her debut short story collection, The Secret Lives of Church Ladies, won the 2021 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction, the 2020/2021 Story Prize, and the 2020 LA Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction; it was also a 2020 finalist for the National Book Award. The Secret Lives of Church Ladies focuses on Black women, sex, and the Black church, and is being adapted for television by HBO Max. Deesha Philyaw is also a Kimbilio Fiction Fellow. Her personal essay writing topics include race, sex, gender, and pop culture. Dinner to follow in Perlik Commons at 5:45 p.m.