HUGH FORRESTChief Programming Officer
Hugh Forrest serves
as Chief Programming Officer for South by Southwest (SXSW). Scheduled March
13-22, 2020 in Austin, this event brings together more than 70,000 industry
creatives from across the United States and around the world. These creatives
are inspired by nine days of panels, presentations, brainstorming, networking,
deal-making, socializing, creating, innovating, and fun.
Forrest was named "Austinite of
the Year" in 2012 by the Austin Chamber of Commerce (along with fellow
SXSW Directors Roland Swenson, Louis Black and Nick Barbaro). In 2014, Forrest
and these other SXSW Directors were named Austin Entrepreneurs of the Year by
Ernst & Young. He recently received an honorary doctorate of humane letters
from Kenyon College, his alma matter.
In addition to his work at SXSW, he
has previously served on of the National Advisory Board for the Poynter
Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida. He is currently part of the Board of
Directors for Austin Habitat for Humanity and also serves on the Board of Directors
for the Austin-based accessibility company Knowbility. Additionally, he is a
trustee for the Austin Awesome Foundation.
Before joining the SXSW team in the
dark ages of 1989, he founded a small monthly alternative publication called
The Austin Challenger. He also wrote for several other newspapers and
publications, including the Austin Chronicle, the Texas Sports Chronicle, the
West Austin News, Willamette Week and the Seattle Weekly.