Joanne Fitzgerald (1956-2011)

IBBY Canada is sad to report that Governor General’s Award-winning artist, Joanne Fitzgerald, passed away on August 14, 2011, after a long battle with cancer. Born in Montreal, Joanne knew from a very young age that she loved to draw. She attended Mount Allison University in Sackville, New Brunswick, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts.

Joanne illustrated many beloved Canadian children’s books including Plain Noodles, Emily’s House, The Blue Hippopotamus, and This Is Me and Where I Am. She won the Governor General’s Award for her work in Teddy Jame’s Doctor Kiss Says Yes.

Her family is asking that in lieu of flowers, friends of Joanne make a donation in her name to IBBY Canada by clicking here. Please be sure to note “In Memory of Joanne Fitzgerald” in the section marked Additional Comments.

Thanks to Groundwood and Kids Can Press!

IBBY Canada has submitted the Canadian nomination dossiers to the Hans Christian Andersen Award jury. Our nominations this year are Tim Wynne-Jones (author) and Stéphane Jorisch (illustrator). IBBY Canada is the only eligible nominating body in Canada for the HCA Award, which is considered one of the most prestigious children’s literature awards in the world and is often referred to as the Little Nobel.

Since the HCA jury is truly an international one, with jurors living across the globe, it is expensive to ship two nomination packages, including books.

IBBY Canada would like to thank Groundwood Books and Kids Can Press for their generous donations of books and funds to help us submit the required materials for the HCA Awards nominations. Their financial support helps to ensure Canadian authors and artists get their due recognition on the international stage.

Watch this space for news on the 2012 Hans Christian Andersen Awards and keep your fingers crossed for Tim and Stéphane!

Look Who’s the Latest IBBY Canada Patron!

His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, is now a Patron of IBBY Canada. We are thrilled to have his support along with that of our other Patrons: Annick Press, Groundwood Books, HarperCollins Canada, Kids Can Press, and Library and Archives Canada.

How to Help the Slave Lake Library

As of May 15, 2011, the public library in Slave Lake, Alberta, burned to the ground in a massive forest fire that also consumed 40% of the town infrastructure. Even more heartbreaking, the library had just opened in 2010—a brand-new, beautiful building full of new books and excited staff. If you would like to donate books—new or nearly new (nothing more than two years old) and in good condition—or money, please check out the Peace Library System website or these other helpful links.

Andersen Nominee, Tim Wynne-Jones, in The Toronto Star

Here is a great interview with Tim Wynne-Jones, IBBY Canada’s author nominee for the prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Award. Our artist nominee is Stéphane Jorisch. The biennial award recognizes an author and artist whose entire body of work has made a lasting contribution to children’s literature. The winners will be announced in March 2012.

IBBY’s Children in Crisis Support for Japan

IBBY’s Children in Crisis fund is accepting donations for the 3-11 Picture Book Project, a project initiated by JBBY to aid the children of Japan after the devastating earthquake on March 11, 2011. For more information on the project and details on how to donate, please visit IBBY Canada Councillor-West Margriet Ruurs’s website Bookmatchmaker.