Emmy-winning television writer Norman Stiles has been selected to receive the 2009 Writers Guild of America, East’s (WGAE) Herb Sargent Award for Comedy Excellence. The award is bestowed upon writers who have “shown excellence in comedy writing and… inspired others through leadership and mentoring,” according to WGAE.

Stiles spent much of his career working on the classic PBS show “Sesame Street,” bringing a level of sophistication and subtlety to children’s programming that was both genuinely funny and educational for generations of kids and parents around the world. As the show’s head writer, Stiles guided the writing of more than 2,000 scripts and helped conceive and supervise the development of such classic characters as Elmo, Count Von Count and Telly Monster. He also wrote or co-wrote many “Sesame Street” songs, was a writer for Merv Griffin’s “Late Night” and a co-creator with Mel Brooks of “When Things Were Rotten.”

Stiles will receive the Comedy Excellence honor at the 61st Annual Writers Guild Awards ceremony held on Saturday, February 7, 2009 at New York City’s Hudson Theatre.

For more information or to purchase tickets, call 212/767-7812 or visit the WGAE website at www.wgaeast.org/awards.