It is with pride and enthusiasm that the Ohio Center for the Book at Cleveland Public Library reveals the names of the nine individuals who have volunteered their time and service as Ohio Center for the Book Letters About Literature judges. Well known and highly regarded within their respective fields, author Tricia Springstubb, Professor Robert Noll, Linda Hengst, Janet Ingraham Dwyer, Nancy Eames, Cindy Lombardo, Aaron Mason, Annisha Jeffries, and Sandra Nosse each possess experience in their field that will give them perspective in judging this contest.
Introducing the Judges:
· Tricia Springstubb – Ohio writer. With her effervescent enthusiasm, teacher/librarian turned author Tricia Springstubb has regaled children with accessible stories that demonstrate the importance, and impact of love, belief and caring. Long appreciated by her legion of fans, Ms. Springstubb has recently been recognized by several critical literary groups for the perception and immediacy that one encounters in her work. Among her most beloved titles are Mo Wren, Lost and Found, Two Plus One Makes Trouble, The Magic Guinea Pig and The Blueberry Troll. Her most recent book, What Happened on Fox Street, was inspired by the successful efforts of Lakewood homeowners to prevent their residences from being seized via eminent domain.
· Professor Robert Thomas Noll – Educator, Writer & Producer. Winner of nine Emmys and twenty-five other national and international writing awards, Professor Robert Thomas Noll of John Carroll University has brought taste, insight and sophistication to the stage (31 produced plays, including such children’s favorites as The Pied Piper of Hamelin, Billie and Her Hillbilly Barnyard Band, Circus Time! and Balto - The Dog That Saved Nome, Alaska), silver screen and television (Hickory Hideout). For the past eighteen years, Professor Noll has imbued students at John Carroll with a passion for the craft of writing. As the adviser to those students behind the Carroll News, Prof. Noll is closely involved in the nurturing of new talent.
· Linda Hengst – Executive Director of the Ohioana Library Association, Advocate. Before leading the Ohioana Library Association, Linda Hengst was the assistant regional director with CARE USA. Over the past three decades, she has actively empowered young women throughout the state through her extensive work with the YWCA.
· Janet Ingraham Dwyer – Youth Services Library Consultant, State Library of Ohio. In 2009, Janet Ingraham Dwyer joined the State Library of Ohio as the state’s new Youth Services Library Consultant. Not only has she promoted and sustained such statewide youth related activities as the Summer Reading Program, Choose to Read Ohio and Ready to Read, Ms. Ingraham Dwyer has further expanded the involvement and role of Youth Services in the lives of Ohio’s youth.
· Nancy Eames –Toledo-Lucas County Public Library Youth Services Coordinator. Nancy Eames has inspired the staff and customers of her library system with her belief that reading—for youth and adults alike—can open the door to new worlds and interests.
· Annisha Jeffries – Branch Manager of the Collinwood Branch, Cleveland Public Library. Before she became the branch manager of the Collinwood Branch, Ms. Jeffries was the Library’s School Age Coordinator for Programming & Scheduling Services. As a member of the YALSA’s Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers, she worked tirelessly to inculcate a passion for reading in those teens who might otherwise shy away from books. In 2007, Annisha was a participant in the Library of Congress’ StoryCorps oral history program.
· Sandra Nosse – Head of the Youth Services Department at the Main Branch of the Cleveland Public Library. Ms. Nosse and her team are impassioned promoters and advocates of children and teens. Wherever age they happen to be, children and teens—as well as those who love and teach them—can find the best materials and resources to educate and entertain.
· Aaron Mason –Assistant Administrator of Programming & Outreach Services, Cleveland Public Library. With his insight into the interests of the Great Cleveland community, Mr. Mason has helped manifest the mission statement of the Cleveland Public Library—to make information available in “a timely, convenient and equitable” manner—by implementing diverse and topical programming.
· Cindy Lombardo - Deputy Director of the Cleveland Public Library. Having initially started her career as a Children’s Librarian, Dr. Lombardo became an innovative director of some of the state’s most influential library systems and a member of the board on several charitable and non-profit organizations. Lombardo has served on numerous American Library Association (ALA) national selection committees, including the Newbery and Caldecott Awards for children, and the Printz award for young adult literature. She has been a frequent conference speaker and organizer for local and national library organizations. Her work as author, editor, annotator, and reviewer has appeared in numerous local and national publications and has been praised for its eloquence and insightfulness.