July 2002 – Newbery: Tuesday, June 18

Tuesday morning I was privileged to attend the Coretta Scott King Award breakfast. Award recipient Mildred Taylor (for The Land) was unable to attend, so her editor Phyllis Fogelman read the speech Ms. Taylor had prepared. Fiction Honor winners Marilyn Nelson (Carver) and Sharon Flake (Money-Hungry) also spoke, as well as the illustration winners: Jerry Pinkney, Award for Goin’ Someplace Special—a book I LOVE—and Bryan Collier, Honor for Martin’s Big Words; and Jerrome Larrigue, John Steptoe New Talent Award recipient (for Freedom Summer, text by Deborah Wiles). There was a warm and celebratory spirit at this event and I enjoyed it immensely.

As well as hearing the winners speak, Mrs. King herself addressed the audience. It was truly thrilling to hear her, and I couldn’t have picked a better way for my magical weekend to finish.

july2002_Coretta Scott King
Mrs. King speaks at the award breakfast named in her honor.

I flew home Tuesday afternoon, replete with memories of my magical time at ALA. A gazillion thanks to all who attended, and all who were there in spirit!

Photo credits: Lynne Polvino, JoAnn Hill, Ed Park, Ben Dobbin, Kay Winters, Julie Hubble, JoAnn Jonas

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