SLJTeen Live!

Join thousands of librarians on August 15 for our seventh annual SLJTeen Live! virtual conference without leaving the comfort of your home (or reference* desk).

This free, daylong event will feature high-profile and up-and-coming YA authors talking about their latest titles for teens. You'll also have the chance to get advice from innovative librarians tackling timely issues relevant to your teens and services.

This year's theme is Speaking Truth to Power. From organizing in Ferguson to attending school board meetings in Tucson to walking out in Parkland, the youth of Generation Z have shown themselves to be powerful agents of change who won't tolerate silence, indifference, or oppression. Today's young adult literature and youth services librarians must rise to meet their needs and passions. The conference's author panels and library programming sessions will give you tools and ideas on how to engage teens and support them as they continue to make their mark on the world. Trends in publishing are beginning to acknowledge Gen Z's unique positioning in today's fast-paced and highly politicized society, and even evergreen topics in library services deserve a second look to see how they can support teens coming of age in this era.

Explore the virtual exhibit hall, download materials, enter contests, hear directly from publishers about their newest books as well as live chat with staff, authors and peers!
 

Registration includes access to the SLJTeen Live! archives for on-demand viewing at your convenience!

Follow us on Twitter! @SLJournal | #SLJTeenLive

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Program

9:00 – 10:00 AM ET | Explore the Exhibits
 
10:00 – 11:00 AM ET | Opening Keynote
 
  Presented by:
Elizabeth Acevedo, Author, The Poet X (HarperCollins, 2018)
 
11:15 AM – 12:15 PM ET | Two YA Panels Running Concurrently
 
 

Mental Health in YA

#EndTheStigma. Mental health and mental illness are finally getting more attention, but everywhere from healthcare to media still struggle with how to treat, identify, and represent it thoughtfully. These authors will discuss how they craft characters and write stories that present authentic experiences of mental illness that can be validating to readers who share them and eye-opening to readers who do not.
 
  Lindsay Champion, Someday, Somewhere (Kids Can, 2018)
Dana L. Davis, Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now (Harlequin Teen, 2018)
Adib Khorram, Darius the Great Is Not Okay (Penguin/Dial, 2018)
An Na, The Place Between Breaths (S. & S./Atheneum, 2018)
Maggie Thrash, Honor Girl (Candlewick, 2018)

Moderated by:
Hannah Gómez, PhD Student, University of Arizona
 
 

Creativity Unbound: The Arts in YA

STEM gets the attention, but the arts are just as valuable for teens' development and future plans. That goes for producing it and loving it. These authors will discuss how they created stories that star teen-aged characters who appreciate or participate (or both) in the arts.
 
  Lynn Curlee, The Great Nijinsky (Charlesbridge, 2019)
Anna Hecker, When the Beat Drops (Sky Pony, 2018)
Jarrett J. Krosoczka, Hey, Kiddo (Scholastic, 2018)
Emily X.R. Pan, The Astonishing Color of After (Little, Brown, 2018)
Ashley Woodfolk, The Beauty That Remains (Delacorte, 2018)

Moderated by:
Cecilia Cackley, Children's and Young Adult Buyer/Event Coordinator, East City Bookshop (DC)
 
12:15 – 12:40 PM ET | Break, Explore the Exhibits
 
12:40 – 1:00 PM ET | Lunch Speaker
 
  Presented by:
Sabaa Tahir, Author, "An Ember in the Ashes" series (Penguin/Razorbill)
 
1:00 – 2:00 PM ET | Two YA Panels Running Concurrently
 
 

Stories Retold and Worlds Reimagined: Fantastical YA

  Elana K. Arnold, Damsel (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, 2018)
Betsy Cornwell, The Forest Queen (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2018)
Anna-Marie McLemore, Blanca & Roja (Feiwel & Friends, 2018)
Kiersten White, The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein (Delacorte, 2018)
Mimi Yu, The Girl King (Bloomsbury, 2019)

Moderated by:
Sayantani DasGupta, The Serpent's Secret (Scholastic, 2018)
 
 

Detoxing Masculinity

"Toxic masculinity" is the stringent adherence to gender roles and stereotypes, governing and defining what are "acceptable" emotions and behavior. In the age of #MeToo, school shootings, and incels, how do we redefine what it means to be men and boys? These authors will discuss how they interrogate and unpack masculinity in their work and consider their responsibility as authors for young people of all genders.
 
  Leila del Duca, Sleepless (Image)
Eric Gansworth, Give Me Some Truth (Scholastic, 2018)
Kelly Loy Gilbert, Picture Us In The Light (Disney-Hyperion, 2018)
Adam Garnet Jones, Firesong (Annick, 2018)
Lev Rosen, Jack of Hearts & Other Parts (Little, Brown, 2018)

Moderated by:
Michelle Barker, The House of One Thousand Eyes (Annick, 2018)
 
2:00 – 3:00 PM ET | Two Teen Services/Programming Panels Running Concurrently
 
 

Readers' Advisory

Gone are the days when a few shelftalkers and bookmark decorating were enough to draw quieter patrons in. Today's librarians are using multimedia, redefining libguides, writing blog posts, and challenging stereotypes to draw in bibliophiles and undiscovered readers alike. Five librarians will describe the exciting and innovative ways they've engaged patrons and give you the tools you need to develop similar reader's advisory programs at your library.

  Jessica Anne Bratt, Youth Services Librarian, Grand Rapids Public Library (MI)
Edith Campbell, Reference/Instruction Librarian, Indiana State University
Janet Damon, Library Services Specialist, Denver Public Library
Kiara Garrett, Teen Services Specialist, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library (NC)
Cicely Lewis, Librarian, Meadowcreek High School (GA)

Moderated by:
Allison Denny, Librarian, Arlington Public Library (TX)
 
 

Amplifying Teen Voices

Today's teens have shown how passionate and organized they are when it comes to issues they believe in—so how can adults support them, and where and when can adults step in to spread the word? Two librarians and one educator will share the ways they've amplified the work that their patrons and students are doing to extend the teens' reach in the world and empower them to do more.

  Nancy Evans, Young Adult Librarian, Levittown Public Library (NY)
Syntychia Kendrick-Samuel, Head of Young Adult Services, Librarian II, Uniondale Public Library (NY)

Moderated by:
Regina Townsend, Teen Services Librarian, Forest Park Public Library (IL)
 
3:00 – 3:15 PM ET | Break
 
3:15 – 4:15 PM ET | Two Teen Services/Programming Panels Running Concurrently
 
 

Teen Activism

Did you miss the YALSA President's Program at ALA Annual? Here's your chance to hear from a group of librarians who acted as learners and supporters in teen-led social justice and librarian professional development programs.

  Gabbie Barnes, YOUmedia Manager and Teen Services Librarian, Hartford Public Library (CT)
Jose Cruz, Middle School Services Librarian, Oak Park Public Library (IL)
Julie Stivers, School Librarian, Mount Vernon Middle School (NC)
Chris Tuttell, Digital Learning Coordinator, Wake County Public Schools (NC)

Moderated by:
Reneé Bibby, Librarian, Pima County Public Library (AZ)
 
 

Passive Programming/College Readiness

We can't be everywhere every second of the day, but that doesn't mean the teens don't need us to provide them with support and services. These librarians will discuss the passive programs they've implemented in their libraries as well as the ways they've helped teens get ready for college through tutoring and other passive programs.

  Trixie Dantis, Teen Services Supervisor, Arlington Heights Memorial Library (IL)
Dora Ho, Young Adult Librarian/Program Specialist, Los Angeles Public Library
Jaime LeRoy, Librarian, Northwest High School (TX)
Megan Young, Teen Services Advisor, Arlington Heights Memorial Library (IL)
 
4:15 – 4:45 PM ET | Closing Keynote
 
  Presented by:
Dhonielle Clayton, Author, The Belles (Disney/Freeform, 2018)
 

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Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Elizabeth Acevedo
 
    Elizabeth Acevedo was born and raised in New York City and her poetry is infused with Dominican bolero and her beloved city's tough grit.

She holds a BA in Performing Arts from The George Washington University and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Maryland. With over fifteen years of performance experience, Acevedo has been a featured performer on B.E.T, TV One's Verses and Flow and has also delivered several TED Talks. She has graced stages nationally and internationally including renowned venues such as The Lincoln Center, Madison Square Garden, the Kennedy Center of the Performing Arts, South Africa's State Theatre, The Bozar in Brussels, and the National Library of Kosovo.

Acevedo is a National Slam Champion, Beltway Grand Slam Champion, and the 2016 Women of the World Poetry Slam representative for Washington, D.C, where she placed 8th in the world.

Her poems have been published or are forthcoming in Poetry, Puerto Del Sol, Callaloo, The Notre Dame Review, and others. Acevedo is a Cave Canem Fellow, Cantomundo Fellow, and participant of the Callaloo Writer's Workshop. She is the author of the chapbook, Beastgirl & Other Origin Myths (YesYes Books, 2016) and the New York Times bestselling novel, The Poet X (HarperCollins, 2018).
 
Dhonielle Clayton
 
    Dhonielle Clayton is the author of New York Times bestseller The Belles and coauthor of the "Tiny Pretty Things" series. She grew up in the Washington, DC, suburbs on the Maryland side and spent most of her time under her grandmother's table with a stack of books. A former teacher and middle school librarian, Dhonielle is cofounder of CAKE Literary, a creative development company whipping up decidedly diverse books for a wide array of readers, and COO of the non-profit, We Need Diverse Books. She's got a serious travel bug and loves spending time outside of the USA but makes her home in New York City, where she can most likely be found hunting for the best slice of pizza. You can also find her online at dhonielleclayton.com or follow her @brownbookworm.
 
Sabaa Tahir
 
    Sabaa Tahir is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of An Ember in the Ashes and its sequel, A Torch Against the Night. She grew up in California's Mojave Desert at her family's eighteen-room motel. There, she spent her time devouring fantasy novels, raiding her brother's comic book stash, and playing guitar badly. She began writing An Ember in the Ashes while working nights as a newspaper editor. She likes thunderous indie rock, garish socks, and all things nerd. Sabaa currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family.
 

Panelists and Moderators

Mental Health in YA

Lindsay Champion
 
    Lindsay Champion is a YA author living in the best place in the universe, New York City. By day, she is the Food and Wellness Director for the digital media company PureWow. Someday, Somewhere is her first novel.
 
Dana L. Davis     Dana L. Davis is a writer of novels for teens, and also a Hollywood actress with previous series regular roles as: Carmen Phillips on TNT's Franklin and Bash, head Cheerleader Chastity Church on 10 Things I Hate About You and modern day mimic Monica Dawson on NBC's cult series Heroes.

In addition to her work on screen, Dana has become a motivational speaker for teens. Her stirring assemblies empower and encourage youth, helping them to redefine what it means to win and lose.

Extremely versatile, Dana is a screenwriter and a trained Violist with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Music from Loyola Marymount University. She volunteers for non profits like Empowering Lives International, which provides training, resources, and encouragement to underprivileged East African children. Dana also created her own non profit organization Culture For Kids, LA, an organization which gifts inner city children tickets and transportation to see performing arts shows around the Los Angeles area.

Davis was raised in the Midwest and currently resides in Los Angeles with her 7-year-old daughter.
 
Adib Khorram
 
    Adib Khorram is an author, a graphic designer, and a tea enthusiast. If he's not writing (or at his day job), you can probably find him trying to get his 100 yard Freestyle (SCY) under a minute, or learning to do a Lutz Jump. He lives in Kansas City, Missouri.
 
An Na
 
    An Na was born in Korea and grew up in San Diego, California. A former middle school English and history teacher, she is the critically acclaimed author of The Fold, Wait for Me, the National Book Award finalist and Printz Award-winning novel A Step from Heaven, and The Place Between Breaths. She lives in Vermont.
 
Maggie Thrash
 
    Maggie Thrash is the author of the graphic memoir Honor Girl as well as the "Strange Truth" books. She is a former staff writer for Rookie. Maggie Thrash lives in Delaware.
 
Moderator:
 
Hannah Gómez
 
    Sarah Hannah Gómez is a former school librarian and current PhD student at the University of Arizona. She is the author of two "Jake Maddox" books from Capstone Publishing and at work on a YA novel. Find her on Twitter and Instagram @shgmclicious.
 

Creativity Unbound: The Arts in YA

Lynn Curlee
 
    A Southerner by birth and a Yankee by choice, Lynn Curlee began his art career in New York City after graduating with a master's degree in art history from the University of Pennsylvania. In his 20's, Lynn got his first one man show at the Christopher Gallery on Madison Avenue. Then, he was off and running as a gallery artist. In the 1990s, Lynn had the opportunity to illustrate a children's book. It was a great discovery for him. He began writing books and this new career became the main event for him. He has written and illustrated thirteen books for young readers, including the Sibert Honor book Brooklyn Bridge, Skyscraper, Trains, and the forthcoming The Great Nijinsky. Lynn lives in Connecticut.
 
Anna Hecker
 
    Anna Hecker grew up at the dead end of a dirt road in Vermont. She holds an MFA from The New School and spent a decade writing ad copy and chasing beats before returning to fiction, her first love. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, son, and fluffy bundle of glamour, Cat Benatar. Follow her @HeckerBooks on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
 
Jarrett J. Krosoczka
 
    Jarrett J. Krosoczka is a New York Times bestselling author, a two-time winner of the Children's Choice Book Award for the Third to Fourth Grade Book of the Year, an Eisner award nominee, and the author and/or illustrator of more than 30 books for young readers. His work includes several picture books, select volumes of Star Wars: Jedi Academy, the "Lunch Lady" graphic novels, the "Platypus Police Squad" novel series, and his young adult memoir, Hey, Kiddo. Jarrett has given two TED Talks, both of which have been curated to the main page of TED.com and have collectively accrued more than two million views online. He is also the host of The Book Report with JJK on SiriusXM's Kids Place Live, a weekly segment celebrating books, authors, and reading. Jarrett lives in Western Massachusetts with his wife and children, and their pugs, Ralph and Frank.
 
Emily X.R. Pan
 
    Emily X.R. Pan is the New York Times bestselling author of The Astonishing Color of After, named by the Wall Street Journal as one of the top 12 books of the season. Emily currently lives in Brooklyn, New York, but was originally born in the Midwestern United States to immigrant parents from Taiwan. She received her MFA in fiction from NYU, where she was a Goldwater Fellow. She was the founding editor-in-chief of Bodega Magazine, a 2017 Artist-in-Residence at Djerassi, and is co-creator of Foreshadow: A Serial YA Anthology. Visit Emily online at exrpan.com, and find her on Twitter and Instagram: @exrpan.
 
Ashley Woodfolk
 
    Ashley Woodfolk has loved reading and writing for as long as she can remember. She graduated from Rutgers University with a Bachelor of Arts in English and works in children's book publishing. She writes from a sunny Brooklyn apartment, where she lives with her cute husband and her cuter dog. The Beauty That Remains is her debut novel.
 
Moderator:
 
Cecilia Cackley
 
    Cecilia Cackley is a playwright and puppeteer based in Washington DC. She is the children's and young adult buyer/event coordinator for East City Bookshop and a writer for the blog Latinxs in Kid Lit. Find out more about her art at ceciliacackley.com.
 

Stories Retold and Worlds Reimagined: Fantastical YA

Elana Arnold
 
    Elana K. Arnold is the author of many books for children and teens, including the middle grade novels A Question of Miracles, Far From Fair, and A Boy Called Bat, and the YA novels What Girls Are Made Of and Infandous. What Girls Are Made Of was a 2017 National Book Award finalist, and her other books have been variously included on the Los Angeles Public Library's Best Books of the Year list, the Bank Street Best Children's Books of the Year list, the YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults list, have been ALAN Picks, and have been selected for inclusion in the Amelia Bloomer Project. She holds a master's degree in Creative Writing/Fiction from the University of California, Davis, and currently lives in Huntington Beach, California, with her husband, two children, and a menagerie of animals.
 
Betsy Cornwell
 
    Betsy Cornwell is a New York Times bestselling author living in west Ireland. She is the story editor and a contributing writer at Parabola, and her short-form writing includes fiction, nonfiction, and literary translation and has appeared in Fairy Tale Review, Zahir Tales, Luna Luna, and elsewhere. She holds an M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Notre Dame and a B.A. from Smith College.
 
Anna-Marie McLemore
 
    Anna-Marie McLemore was born in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and grew up in a Mexican-American family. She attended University of Southern California on a Trustee Scholarship. A Lambda Literary Fellow, she has had work featured by the the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West, CRATE Literary Magazine's cratelit, Camera Obscura's Bridge the Gap Series, and The Portland Review. She is the author of The Weight of Feathers, the National Book Award longlisted When the Moon Was Ours, Wild Beauty, and the forthcoming magical realism reimagining of Snow-White & Rose-Red meets Swan Lake. She lives in Sacramento, California.
 
Kiersten White
 
    Kiersten White is the New York Times bestselling author of the "And I Darken" series, comprised of And I Darken, Now I Rise, and Bright We Burn; the "Paranormalcy series"; Slayer, and many more novels. She lives with her family near the ocean in San Diego, which, in spite of its perfection, spurs her to dream of faraway places and even further-away times.
 
Mimi Yu
 
    Mimi Yu is an alumna of Voices of Our Nations Arts (VONA/Voices) UC Berkeley 2014 and VONA/Voices University of Miami 2015. She has a BA in liberal arts from Sarah Lawrence and and MFA in Fine Arts from The New School/Parsons School for Design. When she's not writing, she enjoys gardening, quilting, and fostering kittens. She lives in the Chicago area with her partner, five cats, and one dog. The Girl King is her debut novel.
 
Moderator:
 
Sayantani DasGupta
 
    Sayantani DasGupta trained in pediatric medicine and now teaches undergraduate and graduate courses at Columbia University. The Serpent's Secret is her debut middle grade novel. Read more at sayantanidasgupta.com.
 

Detoxing Masculinity

Leila del Duca
 
    Leila del Duca is a comic book artist and writer currently living in Portland, Oregon. Her most recent work is Sleepless, from Image Comics, a fantasy-romance title for teens that is as thrilling as it is beautiful. Her first mainstream job was co-creating and drawing Shutter with Joe Keatinge, also at Image Comics. Since then, she's drawn for The Wicked + The Divine, Scarlet Witch, American Vampire, and wrote Afar, a graphic novel drawn by Kit Seaton and selected for the 2018 YALSA GGNFT List. In 2015 and 2016, Leila was nominated for the Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award for her work on Shutter. Her client list includes Vertigo, Oni Press, IDW, Image Comics, and National Geographic. Leila likes to be creative during her free time, making music, cooking food, knitting, sewing, and can be found staring off into space a lot, drinking coffee and contemplating life.
 
Eric Gansworth
 
    Eric Gansworth (Sˑha-weñ na-saeˀ) is Lowery Writer-in-Residence and Professor of English at Canisius College in Buffalo, NY and was recently NEH Distinguished Visiting Professor at Colgate University. An enrolled Onondaga, he was born and raised at the Tuscarora Indian Nation, just outside Niagara Falls, NY. His debut novel for young readers, If I Ever Get Out of Here, was a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults pick and an American Indian Library Association Young Adult Honor selection, and he is the author of numerous acclaimed books for adults. Please visit his website at ericgansworth.com.
 
Kelly Loy Gilbert
 
    Kelly Loy Gilbert believes deeply in the power of stories to illuminate a shared humanity and give voice to complex, broken people. She is the author of Conviction, a William C. Morris Award finalist, and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. She would be thrilled to hear from you on Twitter @KellyLoyGilbert or at KellyLoyGilbert.com.
 
Adam Garnet Jones
 
    Adam Garnet Jones (Ka-nîpawit Iskotêk) is a Cree filmmaker and writer. Fire Song is an adaptation of his award-winning feature film of the same name. Adam lives in Toronto, Ontario.
 
Lev Rosen
 
    Lev Rosen writes books for people of all ages, most recently Depth and The Memory Wall. His books have been translated into different languages, featured on numerous best of the year lists, and nominated for awards. He lives in NYC with his husband and a very small cat.
 
Moderator:
 
Michelle Barker
 
    Michelle Barker is an award-winning author whose works include poetry, YA fiction, and picture books. Michelle also works as an editor and writing workshop leader. Michelle lives in Vancouver, British Columbia.
 

Readers' Advisory

Jessica Ann Bratt
 
    Jessica Anne Bratt always brings a high level of passion and enthusiasm to her job as Youth Services Manager at the Grand Rapids Public Library. During her first years as a librarian, she began the DigiBridge partnership between Grand Rapids Public Schools and the library, which resulted in her being named a 2016 Library Journal Mover and Shaker. Currently, she is on the Board of Directors for the Michigan Library Association, and serves on ALA's Coretta Scott King Book Award Jury Committee. She has also written book reviews for both School Library Journal and Booklist. Finally, she has presented at national conferences on multiple topics and is now engaged in a new adventure: motherhood.
 
Edith Campbell
 
    Edith Campbell is an assistant librarian in the Cunningham Memorial Library at Indiana State University. Edith currently serves as the Indiana State Ambassador for the United States Board on Books for Young People and is a member of the 2018 YALSA Michael L. Printz Award selection committee. She is on the Advisory Board for the Research on Diversity in Youth Literature journal and for the Journal of Research on Librarians and Young Adults. She blogs at CrazyQuiltsEdi. Edith received her BA in Economics from the University of Cincinnati and MLS. from Indiana University.
 
Janet Rene Damon
 
    Janet Rene Damon, EdS, MLSIS, is the library services specialist for Denver Public Schools and supports 21st-century school libraries, diverse collections, and equity initiatives. Janet is also the founder of Afros and Books, a sisterhood of black librarians who promote diverse books, design culturally-responsive family literacy workshops and facilitate "Sankofa Storytimes," with community partners.

In her spare time, she writes a multicultural motherhood blog that features cultural festivals, travel ideas, and book recommendations for diverse families at mixmomma.com.
 
Kiara Garrett
 
    Kiara Garrett is a Teen Service Specialist at ImaginOn: The Joe and Joan Martin Center in Charlotte, NC. She was named a 2018 Library Journal Mover & Shaker for her booklist that went viral of "If You Like This Album, Read this Book". You can find her on twitter @kiarareadthat to see more music and book pairings.
 
Cicely Lewis
 
    Cicely Lewis is a small-town girl from Mississippi with a passion for promoting literacy in nontraditional ways in her media center at Meadowcreek High School in Norcross, GA. Currently, she's featured on the cover of the 2018 "The Power of Librarians" calendar. She will be honored this year as one of the Top Ten Educators by the Atlanta Journal Constitution later this month. In her spare time, she loves spending time with her husband and college sweetheart, Michael and their two beautiful children.
 
Moderator:
 
Allison Denny
 
    Allison Denny is a librarian at the Arlington Public Library and has worked in libraries in north Texas for five years. Her programming has supported community-wide reading, like summer reading club, author visits, and book clubs. She loves science fiction and is generally reading three or more books at a time.
 

Amplifying Teen Voices

Nancy Evans
 
    Nancy Evans is the head of the Young Adult department at the Levittown Public Library in Levittown, NY. She is a 2017 Library Journal Mover & Shaker and has presented her program "Strong Girls School" at PLA and ALA. She has written several articles for VOYA magazine and her book, Cultivating Strong Girls: Library Programming That Builds Self-Esteem and Challenges Inequality was published by Libraries Unlimited in 2018.
 
Syntychia Kendrick-Samuel
 
    Syntychia Kendrick-Samuel has been working in the field of public librarianship since 2001 and was named a 2016 Library Journal Mover & Shaker. She is currently the Head of Teen Services at Uniondale Public Library. She's authored several articles and essays about young adult programming, Junior Friends' groups, and her experiences as an African-American librarian.
 
Moderator:
 
Regina Townsend
 
    Regina Townsend is a teen services librarian, a health blogger, and a community advocate. She is passionate about advocating for under-served populations, providing opportunities and resources for teens and young adults that motivate and empower them, and encouraging community involvement and service. Her players two & three are husband Jahbari, and their toddler, Judah.
 

Teen Activism

Gabbie Barnes
 
    Gabbie Barnes is a Black multicultural-dreamer living, working, surviving, and thriving in the "Hartbeat": Hartford, CT. She is an auntie, soul sister, daughter, cat mother, mentor, librarian, consultant, mentee, and cinephile. She offers spiritual advising, tarot readings, and essential oil advice. Gabbie received her MLIS during a short, 4-year stint exploring life as a Pacific Northwesterner. She has institutional experience in academic, special, and public libraries.
 
Jose Cruz
 
    Jose Cruz was born and raised in Chicago. He holds a BA in Latin American Studies, an MA in History, and and earned his MLIS in 2015. Jose is the Middle School Services Librarian at the Oak Park Public Library just west of Chicago. Before that he worked as a community organizer for various organizations.
 
Julie Stivers
 
    Julie Stivers is the librarian at Mount Vernon Middle School, an alternative public school in Raleigh, NC, where she loves helping students find and devour engaging, reflective literature. Her research and practical interests include culturally sustaining pedagogy, inclusive library spaces, and finding creative ways to dismantle the traditional literary canon.
 
Chris Tuttell
 
    Chris Tuttell has spent 18 years in education serving as a classroom teacher, librarian and currently as a digital learning coordinator for Wake County Public Schools in Raleigh, NC. She is the founder of the student advocacy podcast, In Their Best Interest (@itbiEDU) and the cofounder of Raleigh's Rolling Readers (@RaleighsReaders), a free summer bookmobile that delivers books to kids throughout SE Raleigh.
 
Moderator:
 
Reneé Bibby
 
    Reneé Bibby is the director of The Writers Studio Tucson, where she teaches advanced and beginner creative writing workshops. Her work has appeared in PRISM International, Thin Air, Third Point Press, The Worcester Review, and Wildness. Her stories have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes and Best Small Fictions. She is a contributing editor at The Wilds and Assistant Fiction Editor at Attitcus Review. Visit her at reneebibby.com.
 

Passive Programming/College Readiness

Trixie Dantis
 
    Trixie Dantis is Youth Services Manager at Arlington Heights Memorial Library. She's worked at AHML since 2012 and has over ten years' experience working with youth. In her work at the library, she's focused on STEM initiatives and services for English Language Learners (ELLs). Trixie cochairs Illinois Library Association's Diversity Committee and, in 2016, received the association's Crosman Memorial Award, given annually to a library professional who has accomplished a great deal in a short amount of time. Trixie was named a 2017 Library Journal Mover & Shaker for innovative in-library and outreach programming targeting teens. She received her MLIS from Dominican University and BA in English from University of Illinois at Chicago. Trixie tweets @trixupmysleeve.
 
Dora Ho
 
    Dora Ho is the Young Adult Librarian/Program Specialist of the Los Angeles Public Library (LAPL). Ho is the coordinator of the Student Smart Program since 2005 and manages the after school homework centers throughout the branches of LAPL. She is active in the American Library Association (ALA), Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA), Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA), REFORMA, and Joint Council of Librarians of Color (JCLC). She has served as a member of the ALA Executive Board from 2011–2014. Also, she is a past president of ALA New Members Round Table, APALA, and CALA. Currently she is the treasurer of JCLC and has been a Councilor-at-Large of ALA since 2001. Ho has served as mentor for students at the UCLA School of Library Information Science, APALA and CALA.
 
Kristy Jett-Brown
 
    Kristy Jett-Brown, M.Ed., is the librarian at Chancellor High School in Spotsylvania, Virginia. She received her master's degree from Regent University and her endorsement in Library Media PreK–12 from The University of Virginia's College at Wise. Kristy has worked in elementary, middle, and high school classrooms. She teaches Information Literacy for the Digital Age as an adjunct instructor for Old Dominion University. Her library was featured in School Library Journal's July 2018 article Librarian Preps Teens for "FaceTime". Follow her library adventures @TheChHSLibrary.
 
Jaime LeRoy
 
    Jaime LeRoy is currently the librarian at Northwest High School in Justin, Texas. She has been a librarian for nine years and has worked at elementary, middle, and high school levels. Jaime is a proud Hufflepuff and slightly obsessed Harry Potter fan. When not working or reading, Jaime can be found playing with her dog, Kirby, watching UT football (Hook 'Em Horns), or spending time with family and friends.
 
Megan Young
 
    Megan Young is a Teen Services Advisor at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library. Currently enrolled in the University of Alabama's library science programs, Roll Tide!, Megan is pursuing her goal of becoming a full-fledged librarian. Since starting at AHML in 2015, having worked in libraries since 2013, she has stressed the importance of social and political activism as well as emphasizing the work of volunteerism and inclusion. As an active member of Young Adult Services Forum (YASF), Megan has selected books for Battle of the Books, as well as written reviews. She earned a BA in English, and a minor in Spanish, from Illinois State University. Megan sometimes tweets, but mostly just creeps @meganlwhy.
 

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Sponsors

Annick Press     Annick Press is one of the most innovative and relevant publishers of fiction and non-fiction for children and young adults. Annick is proud to have published award-winning titles that speak to issues young people deal with every day: relationships, diversity, bullying, addiction, self-image, and sexuality. Annick's young adult titles include historical fiction, non-fiction, and contemporary novels, which are frequently set outside of North America to offer readers a wider perspective on the world at large.
 
Baker & Taylor     Baker & Taylor, a Follett company, is the premier worldwide distributor of digital and print books and entertainment products. We love books and leverage our unsurpassed distribution network to deliver rich content in multiple formats, anytime and anywhere, to readers worldwide. Baker & Taylor offers cutting-edge digital media services and innovative technology platforms to thousands of publishers, libraries and retailers globally.
 
Bloomsbury     Bloomsbury Children's Books is a leading independent publisher with a full range of titles from picture books through teen, fiction and nonfiction.
 
Candlewick Press     Candlewick Press publishes award winning hardcover and paperback children's books for readers of all ages, including board books, picture books, beginning readers, chapter books, novels for middle grade and young adult readers, and e-books. Our imprints include Big Picture Press, Candlewick Entertainment, Candlewick Studio, Nosy Crow, and Templar Books.
 
Charlesbridge Teen     Charlesbridge Teen features storytelling that presents new ideas and an evolving world. Carefully curated stories give voice to unforgettable characters with unique perspectives that inspire teens to cheer or sigh, laugh or reflect, reread or share with a friend, and read some more. Whether it's contemporary realism, fantasy, mystery, or science fiction, Charlesbridge Teen wants to tell stories that speak to young adults and make them think about the world in a new way.
 
Diamond Book Distributors     In 2002, Diamond Comic Distributors spun off its book trade efforts into Diamond Book Distributors (DBD). DBD is dedicated to making a wide selection of graphic novels and pop culture merchandise available globally to bookstores, libraries, schools, online retailers, mass merchants and others. The company features a team of seasoned professionals in sales and marketing, as well as the Diamond Comic Distributors reputation and infrastructure in selling graphic novels and related pop culture merchandise.
 
Disney Book Group     Disney Book Group publishes award-winning children's books for all ages, featuring several formats: board books, picture books, chapter books, novels, and paperback originals. Imprints include: Disney-Hyperion, Disney-Jump at the Sun, Disney Press, Marvel Press, Disney Lucasfilm Press, and Freeform.
 
Harlequin Teen     Harlequin TEEN™ is the home of critically acclaimed, award-winning, commercial young-adult fiction from bestselling established authors and fresh new voices. The program publishes a variety of genres, including contemporary, fantasy, dystopian, paranormal, historical, romance and horror, and it releases one to three original novels each month. Harlequin TEEN is an imprint of Harlequin—a division of HarperCollins Publishers—which has offices in 14 countries and publishes in as many as 34 languages and 102 international markets.
 
HarperCollins Children's Books     HarperCollins Children's Books is one of the leading publishers of children's books. Respected worldwide for its tradition of publishing quality books for children, HarperCollins is home to many of the classics of children's literature, including Goodnight Moon, Where the Wild Things Are, The Giving Tree, Charlotte's Web, Ramona, Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse, the "I Can Read" beginning reader series, and countless award-winning titles. Imprints include Balzer + Bray, Greenwillow Books, Katherine Tegen Books and HarperTeen. HarperCollins Children's Books is a division of HarperCollins Publishers.
 
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers     Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers includes a wide variety of award-winning, quality, hardcover and paperback books for children and young adults in all genres and formats including: board books, picture books, early readers, chapter books, middle grade, young adult, fiction, nonfiction, and reference.
 
Image Comics     Image Comics is a comic book and graphic novel publisher founded in 1992 by a collective of bestselling artists. Image has since gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. Image currently has six individuals on the Board of Directors: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri, Jim Valentino, and Eric Stephenson. It consists of five major houses: Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline Comics, Skybound Entertainment, and Image Central. Image publishes comics and graphic novels in nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable. It offers science fiction, fantasy, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor, and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today.
 
Junior Library Guild     Junior Library Guild is the book review and collection development service that helps more than 23,000 libraries acquire the best new children's, young adult, and adult crossover titles for their collections.
 
KCP Loft     KCP Loft is a new Young Adult imprint from award-winning publisher Kids Can Press. KCP Loft publishes books that are engrossing, shareable, contemporary and smart for readers 14 and older. KCP Loft is distributed worldwide by Hachette Book Group.
 
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers     From birth to high school graduation (and beyond), Little, Brown Books for Young Readers publishes engaging titles for every age. Our long-standing commitment to literary fiction is highlighted by our award-winning authors such as Sherman Alexie, Paolo Bacigalupi, Laini Taylor, Holly Black and Libba Bray.
 
Penguin Young Readers Group     Penguin Young Readers Group is a global leader in children's publishing, with preeminent imprints such as Dial Books, Dutton, Grosset & Dunlap, Philomel, Puffin, Speak, Firebird, G. P. Putnam's Sons, Razorbill, Viking, Nancy Paulsen books, Kathy Dawson books, Price Stern Sloan, and Frederick Warner. Penguin Young Readers Group publishes books in all formats for children of all ages, including award-winning board books, picture books, novels, and nonfiction.
 
Random House Children's Books     Random House Children's Books is the world's largest English-language children's trade book publisher. Creating books for preschool children through young adult readers, in all formats from board books to activity books to picture books and novels, Random House Children's Books brings together award-winning authors and illustrators, world-famous franchise characters, and multimillion-copy series.
 
Scholastic     Scholastic is the world's largest publisher and distributor of children's books, creating quality books and ebooks that support children's learning both at school and at home. Scholastic releases about 600 original titles annually in the U.S. under 18 imprints, including bestsellers and award-winners, which appeal to established and fledgling readers. With a 95 year history of service to schools and families, Scholastic continues to carry out its commitment to "Open a World of Possible" for all children.
 
Simon & Schuster     Simon & Schuster, a part of CBS Corporation, is a global leader in general interest publishing, dedicated to providing the best in fiction and nonfiction for readers of all ages, and in all printed, digital, and audio formats. Its distinguished roster of authors includes many of the world's most popular and widely recognized writers, and winners of the most prestigious literary honors and awards. It is home to numerous well-known imprints and divisions such as Simon & Schuster, Scribner, Atria Books, Gallery Books, Pocket Books, Touchstone, Adams Media, Threshold Editions, Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, and Simon & Schuster Audio and international companies in Australia, Canada, India, and the United Kingdom, and proudly brings the works of its authors to readers in more than 200 countries and territories.
 
Skyhorse Publishing     Skyhorse is an independent trade book publisher with offices in New York and Vermont. With Sky Pony Press, Arcade Publishing, Good Books, Allworth Press, Night Shade Books, and our other imprints, we successfully publish true crime, house & home, politics, business, art, crafts & hobbies, literary and genre fiction, science fiction, travel, cookbooks, and children's books. We have more than 7,000 titles in print, and we've published 46 New York Times bestsellers.
 
Tutor.com     Tutor.com, a service of The Princeton Review, provides best-in-class, on-demand homework help, tutoring and test preparation for K-Adult learners. Our Learning Suite includes fast, secure connections to over 3,000 tutors during after school, evening and weekend hours. We help students advance their education to the next level and meet their goals. Together with library partners, we equalize access to effective, one-to-one educational support to all community members, regardless of their socioeconomic status.
 

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Annick Press Baker & Taylor Bloomsbury Candlewick Press
Charlesbridge Teen Diamond Book Distributors Disney Book Group Harlequin
HarperCollins Children's Books Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers Image Comics Junior Library Guild
KCP Loft Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Penguin Young Readers Group Random House Children's Books
Scholastic Simon & Schuster Skyhorse Publishing Tutor.com

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