One of the pre-eminent speaker series in the nation, Desert Town Hall features world-class speakers, intellectual content, and youth education to the Coachella Valley. The series offers four programs each year, typically from January to April. This season marked Desert Town Hall’s 30th anniversary.

The biggest and most influential names in the world have come to Indian Wells, creating lifetime memories for all those who attend. From Bob Costas, Chris Wallace, and Caroline Kennedy, to Scott Kelly, Chris Christie, and Condoleezza Rice, the noted list of speakers in the series’ history is indeed impressive.

The 2023 season featured:

  • Frank Abagnale: Author, lecturer, consultant, and leading expert on cybercrime, embezzlement, and forgery
  • Kimberley Strassel: Author, columnist and editorial board member, Wall Street Journal
  • Mike Pompeo: Politician, Diplomat, Businessman, 6th Director of the CIA, and 70th Secretary of State
  • Walter Isaacson: Politician, Diplomat, Businessman, 6th Director of the CIA, and 70th Secretary of State

Support from sponsors and community donations make possible a memorable experience for students who participate in Youth Town Hall, presented by the H. N. & Frances C. Berger Foundation’s Desert Town Hall. Representing the socio-economic diversity found in the Coachella Valley, students from 22 area high schools are invited to attend. More than 150 students attend each of four lectures each year.

Hunter Johnsen works closely with the Desert Town Hall team, creating the marketing and communications materials for the speaker series – from digital (website, banner ads, e-blasts) and speaker introductory videos, to print ads, direct mail pieces, brochures, and other event day materials.

For more information – and to reserve your tickets for the 2024 season – visit