Past recipients include Arthur Miller, Bruce Springsteen, John Sayles, Garrison Keillor, Joan Baez and Sean Penn.
Thomas Steinbeck, who will present the award to Moore next month at a public ceremony at San Jose State University, stated:
Michael Moore is a courageous man and a great selection for the John Steinbeck Award. My father would have loved him; my father was the Michael Moore of his time.
I am truly grateful to the Steinbeck family and the Steinbeck Center for their generous acknowledgment of my work. The works of John Steinbeck have been a singular and powerful inspiration to me all of my life. Steinbeck believed that a story could change the world. He spent his life telling the stories of the powerless and the exploited. Through him, they had a voice. Today we are sadly, once again, witnesses to another Grapes of Wrath.