FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
New York, NY – Monday, November 7, 2016 – Minnesota-based author and literacy volunteer Claudette Hegel has donated her complete collection of the John Newbery and Randolph Caldecott Award winners to the Children’s Book Council. Hegel’s Newbery and Caldecott collection consists of every Medal and Honor book since 1922 and 1938, respectively, totaling 736 titles.
The books’ eastward journey began earlier this summer when CBC Board member Tracy van Straaten discovered Hegel’s advertisement on the Child_Lit listserv. Interim Executive Director Josalyn Moran traveled to Hegel’s home in Bloomington, Minnesota where she and Claudette carefully packed the 700 plus books to be shipped to the Children’s Book Council headquarters in New York City. The books are now proudly displayed on new bookshelves in the CBC conference room, along with full information on every year’s selection committee members; the library will serve as a resource to CBC members, librarians, teachers, booksellers, as well as to all visiting authors.
In addition to being an avid collector of children’s books and ephemera, Hegel volunteers with several local organizations including Books on Wings, which puts books into the hands of underserved kids in schools. She spent more than 20 years volunteering for the Minneapolis and Hennepin County Public Libraries and is a former Minnesota regional advisor for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). She is the author of three books on the Newbery and Caldecott Awards and the winners, biographies of the award namesakes, and other books.
Prior to this donation, Hegel contributed a significant collection of Caldecott and Newbery ephemera to the Children’s Literature Research Center/Kerlan Collection at the University of Minnesota. Says Hegel of her CBC donation: “Yes, I miss having the books handy. I suddenly discovered I used the books more than I thought, even if only for fun, not for research. That being said, I don’t miss the books as much as I thought I would (so far, anyway). Knowing the books will actually be used to help many people instead of making me feel like a miser hoarding gold takes the sting out of the books being a half-a-country away.”
Chair of the Children’s Book Council Board Jon Anderson says of the donation: “As a book lover and a Midwesterner, I am thrilled by this generous act. We’re delighted to receive these marvelous books from Claudette Hegel. We intend this to be a living collection, with a call going out to every author who can to come by and sign their book(s), view the collection, and have a photograph taken.”
About the Children’s Book Council (CBC)
The Children’s Book Council is the nonprofit trade association for children’s book publishers in North America. The CBC offers children’s publishers the opportunity to work together on issues of importance to the industry at large, including educational programming, literacy advocacy, and collaborations with other national organizations. Our members span the spectrum from large international houses to smaller independent presses. The CBC is proud to partner with other national organizations on co-sponsored reading lists, educational programming, and literacy initiatives. Please visit www.cbcbooks.org for more information.
About Every Child a Reader
Every Child a Reader is a 501(c)(3) literacy organization dedicated to inspiring a lifelong love of reading in children and teens across America. Every Child a Reader’s popular and effective programs include Children’s Book Week, a nationwide celebration of books and reading, and the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country; the Children’s Choice Book Awards, the only national book awards program where the winning titles are selected by kids and teens of all ages; and the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature program, the country’s “Children’s Literature Laureate.” Please visit www.cbcbooks.org/about/every-child-a-reader/.
About the Newbery Medal
The Newbery Medal was named for eighteenth-century British bookseller John Newbery. It is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children. To learn more about the awards and for a complete list of winners, visit the ALA website.
About the Caldecott Medal
The Caldecott Medal was named in honor of nineteenth-century English illustrator Randolph Caldecott. It is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children. To learn more about the awards and for a complete list of winners, visit the ALA website.
Emma Kantor, Publicity and Digital Content Manager
The Children’s Book Council and Every Child a Reader