The response from the literary community for the Amtrak Residency program has been amazing and we are very grateful to have had the opportunity to read so many heartfelt applications. The quality of applications was high, which made the challenge of selecting the finalist extremely difficult. Meet the Amtrak Residency judges who helped select the Amtrak Residents for this year:

Jessica GrossJessica Gross is a writer and teacher. Her work has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Paris Review Daily, Los Angeles Review of Books, Longreads, and elsewhere. In 2014, she did a test run of the Amtrak Residency on the Lake Shore Limited, and the response to her Paris Review Daily essay about the experience helped spur Amtrak to launch this formal program.

Joe McHughJoe McHugh has been Vice President – Government Affairs since May 2002. He is responsible for initiating, developing, and communicating Amtrak’s legislative strategy and funding needs to the United States Congress. Mr. McHugh is also responsible for the corporation’s interaction with the Congress, the Executive Branch, and various state governments. Mr. McHugh is also responsible for the company’s corporate communications function involving Media Relations, Employee Communications, Creative Services, as well as Social Media. Mr. McHugh joined Amtrak in July 1994.


Lindsay MoranLindsay Moran is a former clandestine officer for the Central Intelligence Agency. She is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and USA Today. In 2005 she published the bestselling memoir Blowing My Cover, My Life As A Spy. After graduating from Harvard, she won a Fulbright scholarship and then became an English teacher in Bulgaria. She is currently at work on a novel.


jeffreystanley2Jeffrey Stanley is probably best known for his hit wartime stage drama Tesla’s Letters (published by Samuel French). He is an adjunct screenwriting faculty at New York University Tisch School of the Arts and at Drexel University Westphal College of Media Arts & Design. Stanley is also a performance artist, director and award-winning filmmaker. He has written articles for the Washington Post‘s “On Faith” blog, the New York Times and New York Press, and was a resident of Yaddo as well as a Copeland Fellow at Amherst College. Stanley is currently developing a TV series with producers Matthew Myers and Jason Sokoloff. Jeffrey tweets at @jefeVonStanley.