Kerouacians will be familiar with Ferlinghetti as the owner of the cabin in Big Sur where Jack spent some time between July and September, suffering the nervous breakdown he made famous in his novel, Big Sur.Of course, Ferlinghetti was a strong proponent of Beat writers, but City Lights has published across genres internationally.
For more on Ferlinghetti, his Wikipedia article (here) is quite informative.
I've been lucky enough in the past to serve as a reviewer for City Lights publications, and I hope that opportunity continues. If you ever get to San Francisco, a pilgrimage to City Lights is required. While you're there, you can bop over to Vesuvio's (across Jack Kerouac Alley) where Jack used to hang out or make the trek across the Columbus and Broadway to visit The Beat Museum.
Happy Birthday, Lawrence!