Joanne “Jo” Rowling, pen names J. K. Rowling and Robert Galbraith, is a British novelist, screenwriter and film producer. Rowling was born to Peter James Rowling, a Rolls-Royce aircraft engineer, and Anne Rowling (née Volant), a science technician. She is best known as the author of the Harry Potter fantasy series. They have become the best-selling book series in history and been the basis for a series of films which is the second highest-grossing film series in history. The books have gained worldwide attention, won multiple awards, and sold more than 400 million copies.
Rowling has received honorary degrees from St Andrews University, the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier University, the University of Exeter, the University of Aberdeen and Harvard University, for whom she spoke at the 2008 commencement ceremony. In 2009 Rowling was made a Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur by French President Nicolas Sarkozy.