August 2011 Newsletter

From the Editor
President’s Report / Rapport du presidente
Regional Report: From the East
Regional Report: From Ontario
CANSCAIP Spotlight
Bookbird Editors for the 2012-2014 Term
IBBY Canada looks ahead for the Asahi / IBBY Canada anticipe pour l’Asahi
Picturing Canada Wins IRSCL Book Award
Changes to the IBBY Canada Website
Invitation to 2012 TD National Reading Summit
IBBY Congress: London 2012
Congrès IBBY: Londres 2012
Volunteer Editors Needed for CODE’s Reading Liberia Program

Newsletter Masthead

From the Editor

When we changed from publishing two newsletters per year to four, I worried that some issues would be lighter. It turns out my fears are unfounded; there is always something going on at IBBY Canada! I would like to be able to share more of these happenings with our francophone members.

One of my goals as incoming editor was to increase the number of articles available in both French and English. I have been relying on a dedicated team of five volunteer English-to-French translators (bonjour à Josiane, Louise, Susane, Jacques, et Laurent!), but there are often so many demands on our time that home and work life must take
priority. It is my hope that IBBY Canada can grow its team of volunteer English-to-French translators so that more articles can be translated without putting undue pressure on anyone to contribute. If you or anyone you know is willing and able to volunteer their time and skill to translate English articles into French, please let me know. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

– Jessica Fung
Newsletter Editor
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President’s Report

IBBY Canada works up a sweat
I hope you are enjoying your summer wherever you are! The theme of IBBY Canada’s summer seems to be: There is no rest for the wicked, or those who work in children’s literature.

Thanks to Josiane Polidori, Yvette Ghione, and Rachel di Salle for their work in preparing the nomination dossiers for the Hans Christian Andersen Award, which is so prestigious it’s been nicknamed the Little Nobel. IBBY Canada is the only eligible nominating body for Canadian candidates and this year we are nominating author Tim Wynne-Jones and illustrator Stéphane Jorisch. A big thanks to Groundwood Books and Kids Can Press for their generous donations to help offset the cost of shipping books to the jury.

You can also help us promote Canadian authors and artists on the international stage by going to our newly improved Donate page and donating to the Hans Christian Andersen Award Fund.

Finally, we hope to see you in person at the Word on the Street Festival in Toronto and Halifax. Our new Councillor-East, Jane Baskwill, is especially excited to meet all of you Atlantic Coast IBBYites!

– Patricia Ocampo
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Rapport du présidente

IBBY Canada trime dur
J’espère que vous appréciez votre été, où que vous soyez! Le thème de l’été IBBY Canada semble être: Il n’y a pas de repos pour les malicieux, ou ceux qui travaillent dans la littérature pour enfants.

Merci à Josiane Polidori, Yvette Ghione, et Rachel di Salle pour leur travail dans la préparation des dossiers de candidature pour le Prix Hans Christian Andersen, qui est si prestigieux qu’il a été surnommé le Petit Nobel. IBBY Canada est le seul organisme de mise en candidature pour les candidats admissibles au Canada et cette année nous proposons l’auteur Tim Wynne-Jones et l’illustrateur Stéphane Jorisch. Un grand merci à Groundwood Books et Kids Can Press pour leurs dons généreux afin d’aider à défrayer les frais d’expédition des livres pour le jury.

Vous pouvez également nous aider à promouvoir les auteurs et les artistes canadiens sur la scène internationale en allant à notre page « Dons » récemment mise à jour et en faisant un don à la Fondation du Prix Hans Christian Andersen.

Enfin, nous espérons vous rencontrer au festival « the Word on the Street» de Toronto et Halifax. Notre nouvelle conseillère de l’est, Jane Baskwill, est particulièrement avide de rencontrer tous les membres d’IBBY de la côte Atlantique!

Patricia Ocampo
Traduction: Susane Duchesne
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Regional Reports

Regional Report: From the East
IBBY will have a booth at The Word on the Street in Halifax. New for Halifax this fall is a Book Bag Treasure Hunt designed to drive traffic to the booth. Two-hundred and fifty bags will be produced and randomly distributed to attendees, who will also receive a list of participating organizations. Those receiving these bags will be able to drop by participating booths looking for the free give-aways exhibitors will have. The IBBY logo will be printed on the bags, advertised on the website and on radio. Gifts can be whatever an organization wants to offer. In addition to information about IBBY I plan to give away calendars for parents and children with activities organized on a monthly theme. I am looking for suggestions for other “give-aways” that will make the IBBY booth a memorable one! I plan to recruit Mount Saint Vincent University students and faculty to help on the day.

– Jane Baskwill
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From Ontario
The dog days of summer have settled over Toronto. Trying to stay motivated and keep IBBY on my mind is a bit of a challenge at this time of year. But I have something very exciting to look forward to… WOTS! That’s right, The Word on the Street literary festival is coming up on Sunday, September 25, 2011 from 11am until 6pm.

IBBY Canada will once again be hanging out on Literacy Lane. We’ll be spreading the word, having some fun, and hopefully, enjoying the beautiful day. For more information about WOTS, click here.

Here’s to another great year. Happy reading, IBBY Canada!

– Kate Newman
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CANSCAIP Spotlight

L.M. Falcone
L.M. Falcone has been both a member and on the executive of CANSCAIP. She is an award-winning author of juvenile books for ages 9–12 specializing in the spooky and intriguing genre of mystery and supernatural thrillers. Even her name is mysterious as she has chosen to use initials rather than her first name. (Many a reader has thought she was a man.) Lucy has garnered seven award nominations—how’s that for a lucky number?—and three wins: the 2009 Red Cedar Award, the 2007 Silver Birch Award, and the 2007 Diamond Willow Award. She’s also the first author to win Honour Book in the Manitoba Young Readers’ Choice Awards two years in a row.

L.M. Falcone

D.S. Since the mission of IBBY Canada is to introduce Canadian children’s literature to the world and to promote exceptional international children’s literature in Canada, how do you think your books appeal to children of different cultural backgrounds?
L.F. No matter what their cultural background, all children like to laugh, and all love to be told a scary story. I truly believe it’s written into the DNA of children around the world. Just say, “It was a dark and stormy night,” in any language and youngsters are hooked. They lean forward, eyes wide with anticipation, smiles on
their sweet faces. They want to feel the shiver that comes with all things spooky.
D.S. What countries have your books been published in?
L.F. I’d like to say all of them (and don’t ask me why not because I haven’t the foggiest), but my novels have only been published in French (for the North American market) and Turkish. Because of the genre I write in—supernatural thrillers—you’d think countries would be clamouring for them. Foreign sales are a mystery to me and different publishers seem to have different track records in that particular area.

L.M. Falcone in England

D.S. What attracted you to the genre of mystery and supernatural thrillers?
L.F. For ten years I lived in Los Angeles and during those years I wrote for several television series, one of which was Nickelodeon’s hugely popular Are You Afraid of the Dark? While writing for that show I came to realize how much I loved scary stories—and boy, did kids love them too! For every Afraid of the Dark story idea that got a green light, we writers had to come up with five fully fleshed-out story lines. Hopefully, one of them would interest the producers. I threw myself into everything supernatural—ghosts, witches, hauntings, séances, automatic writing—you name it. I became an expert in the paranormal. When I moved back
to Canada and decided I wanted to get into book publishing, I took one of the story ideas that had been rejected for Are You Afraid of the Dark? and turned it into a novel. It got picked up by Kids Can Press and became The Mysterious Mummer. Once my mind got into this supernatural mode, I just kept going with Walking with the Dead; The Devil, The Banshee and Me; and The Midnight Curse.

D.S. What was it like working in Los Angeles as a screenwriter and meeting famous celebrities?
L.F. Working in Los Angeles as a screenwriter was both exhilarating and heartbreaking. I devoted myself, day and night, to writing and completing 13 screenplays. I loved every minute of it. Writing was my passion, my life, my gift to the world. Although I did sell some television scripts, selling screenplays was another matter altogether. I had some very good agents representing me during this time and many of my scripts got sent to studios (Paramount, Sony, Warner Brothers, etc). As they worked their way up the ladder I can’t tell you how many times I heard, “This is fantastic! This is the best script we’ve read in years!” “We love it!” Yet, in the end, after all the meetings, all the kudos, all the work, not one of them ever got produced. I believe it was Bertolt Brecht who said, “The definition of tragedy is missing by inches.” He was so right. I got so close, so many times, but ultimately the answer would always be, “We’ve decided to pass on this project.” The amount of rejection I got was soul-crushing. I started to believe I was cursed. Even went to Hawaii once in search of a Kahuna who would do a curse removal. I found one; he did a cleansing and said all would be well now. It wasn’t. I eventually returned home to Canada broke and broken. On a lighter note—you asked about meeting celebrities. Because L.A. is the film capital of the world, meeting celebrities was a daily occurrence. I’d see them in grocery lines, at the bank, at movie theatres. Danny De Vito lived nearby and I’d run into him on the street—Harrison Ford chatted with me on the Paramount lot—Jerry Seinfeld ate at the same deli that I frequented—Sidney Poitier sat next to me at a
play—and Bette Midler and Robin Williams attended fund-raisers that I was invited to. It was always fun to be in the presence of these icons, but I never fawned over them or felt that they were better than me. We were all in the entertainment business and I felt like I belonged.

L.M. Falcone's House in Los Angeles

D.S. What interesting research did you come across when writing The Midnight Curse; The Devil, The Banshee and Me; Walking with the Dead; and The Mysterious Mummer?
L.F. I research my books to death (no pun intended). Before writing a word of Walking with the Dead I poured myself into Greek mythology for a full nine months. Through the research I discovered that the Underworld consisted of not one, but three realms (The Elysian Fields, Hades, and Tartarus). I learned that Hades doesn’t mean Hell, as so many believe, but actually ‘Place of the Dead.’ I also learned that the ancient Greeks believed the soul left the body through the mouth and that’s why they often put a gold coin in it – to pay for safe passage to the Underworld. In The Devil, The Banshee and Me my research taught me that, in Irish folklore, banshees are supernatural death messengers. They not only cry when members of their family are about to pass, but they also sing them to heaven. And, if you separate a Banshee from her comb (which she uses to comb her floor-length hair while she’s crying), you can get her to grant you anything you wish for. Just be very careful what that wish is.
D.S. Do you travel to do research on your books? If so, where have you been and what experiences stand out?
L.F. I love to travel when I’m researching my books. The Mysterious Mummer took me to Newfoundland where I rented a house on the same street that Rick Mercer lived on. (My dream neighbours would consist of Rick Mercer on one side and Mr. Bean on the other.) Newfoundlanders opened the door to mummers for me. There was so little research I could get from the internet or libraries so I went to the one province where mummering is still celebrated. Personal stories and experiences were invaluable to the creation of the story. New Brunswick’s Port Elgin became my home for a few months when I began writing The Devil, The Banshee and Me. I found a fabulous old, grey house in the middle of nowhere that became the cemetery house in my novel. I just had to see inside so I snuck in through a boarded up door (I call that research—the police call it ‘break and enter’). England’s countryside (Warickshire) was my home base when I wrote several mysteries in my yet unpublished Max Monroe Mini Mystery series. Outings took me to cathedrals and castles where I discovered glorious gargoyles.
D.S. How do you write scary topics and keep children interested, but not too scared so that they don’t get nightmares? And while we’re on the topic, how do you sleep at night?
L.F. I’m often concerned when students (younger than the 9–12 year olds that my books are intended for) tell me they’re reading my novels. “They’re too scary for you!” I yell. “No they’re not!” they yell back. “We love them!” I guess kids are watching so many horror movies these days that they’re up for anything. This surprises me because I make my stories as scary as I possibly can. I never hold back. I sleep very well indeed. Although the closet door must be closed and I won’t let my feet dangle over the side of the bed.
D. S. You completed the 2011 TD Canadian Children’s Book Week tour on Vancouver Island. What were some of the highlights?
L.F. Not the weather (it rained the whole time). Not the traveling (I drove a rental with a malfunctioning GPS). But, oh those wonderful Islanders. They were amazingly warm, friendly and kind. The kids I presented to were terrific—filled with genuine enthusiasm for me and my books. I wanted to stay forever. A particular highlight was when a host librarian came up to me and told me that she’d brought books home for years hoping to get her daughter interested in reading. It never happened—until she read one of my books. She’s now an avid reader.
D.S. During author visits, what are some of the Handy Tips and techniques that appeal to children coming from a variety of cultures?
L.F. No matter what culture you belong to, the desire to tell stories is as natural as breathing. I encourage students to open themselves up to receive ideas by turning off their TVs, their computers, their video games and start living their lives. Inspiration is everywhere but if your mind is too cluttered, if you’re too “overly entertained” by other things, great ideas will find another place to land. I tell them I’m like a lightning rod that attracts ideas because my mind is open and welcoming. Also, during every author visit, I do a quiet meditation with the students. They’re sooo good at it and most feel a calmness and a quiet confidence settle over them like a warm blanket.
D.S. Is it true that you have changed direction in your writing? Tell us about your latest project.
L.F. I’m finding myself interested in writing for the younger reader these days—picture books like This Book Stinks and The Wacky Alphabet, and also early chapter books for 7–10 year olds. I’ve ventured into my first YA novel, Suck It Up, Princess, that I describe as a tender comedy. But what I’m really excited about (over the moon would be an apt description) is my comedic, action-adventure graphic novel, Farty PantZ! (Think Alf meets Captain Underpants meets The Time Warp Trio.) I love it. It makes me laugh out loud. Just saying the title to kids makes them clamour to buy it. Adults are another animal altogether. Several publishers and over thirty U.S. literary agents have turned their noses up and their thumbs down to this project. But I’m not discouraged in the least. I’ve seen the effect it’s having on kids and I’m sticking with them, thank you very much. I’ve hired an illustrator and we’re moving forward on it. Keep your fingers crossed.
D.S. We have peeked into the mysterious and fascinating world of L.M. Falcone, an award winning children’s author who fearlessly researches and writes juvenile books on scary topics involving curses and devils. During author visits she captivates her audiences with her spooky tales, sharing her writing techniques, while
inspiring children to read and write. I’ll leave you with a quote from Grade 5 teacher, Gary Guggino. “When I finished reading Walking with the Dead as a read-aloud, my students stood up and applauded!”

– Debbie Spring
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Dr. Roxanne Harde, University of Alberta, Canada and Dr. Lydia Kokkola, University of Türku, Finland are Bookbird Editors for the 2012-2014 term.

Roxanne HardeRoxanne Harde is the first Canadian Editor of Bookbird: A Journal of International Children’s Literature, and was first introduced to IBBY and Bookbird by an instructor in the library technician program in Saskatchewan. Roxanne went on to Queen’s University and received a PhD in American Literature in 2003 and was a Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Postdoctoral Fellow at Cornell University from 2003-2005.

She is now Associate Dean (Research), Associate Professor of English literature and is a McCalla Professor for 2010/11 at the University of Alberta, Augustana. One of the courses she teaches is Children’s Literature. She believes that children take literature as seriously as scholars, and that it has many roles for them—it can amuse them, comfort them, teach them, and give them the freedom to explore ideas and to think about the world.

Roxanne who is immersed in research has been published in several journals, and last year was co-editor with Irwin Streight of Reading the Boss: Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Works of Bruce Springsteen. She was interested in doing more editorial work, especially in children’s literature, and when she saw the call for Bookbird Editor, contacted Lydia and they were delighted to be the successful applicants.

Their main goal is to raise the profile of Bookbird which, although it has scholarly appeal and is well-known amongst its readership, needs a far wider presence. To this end they designed marketing postcards to promote it, will be advertising in journals, and are looking into getting Bookbird into the MLA International Bibliography and the ERIC (Educational Resources Information Center) Index.

Roxanne is also applying for a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Grant for small journals (SSHRC–pronounced SHIRK) which will give them the necessary funds to accomplish this goal.

They both love the Bookbird postcards which they intend to make more descriptive and to include author/illustrator biographies.

Here’s wishing Roxanne and Lydia much success in their new venture.

– Merle Harris
Alberta Chair
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IBBY Canada looks ahead for the Asahi

After much discussion, IBBY Canada has decided not to submit a nomination for the 2012 IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award as we were unable to find a suitable candidate.

Last year, we were pleased that our nomination, the Osu Children’s Library Fund, run by Kathy Knowles of Winnipeg, won the lucrative award along with Colombia’s Taller de las Letras Jordi Sierra i Fabra Foundation.

The IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award was established in 1986 during the IBBY Congress in Tokyo. The Asahi Shimbun newspaper company generously sponsors the award, which is given biennially to two groups or institutions whose outstanding activities are judged to be making a lasting contribution to reading promotion programmes for children and young people.

The nominations are submitted by the National Sections of IBBY and may include projects from any part of the world. The jury consists of members of the IBBY Executive Committee. The prize of $10,000 US and a diploma is presented to the winners at the biennial IBBY Congress.

– Patricia Ocampo
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IBBY Canada anticipe pour l’Asahi

Après bien des discussions, IBBY Canada a décidé de ne pas soumettre de candidature pour le prix IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion car nous n’avons pas trouvé de candidat approprié.

L’année dernière, nous étions heureux que notre candidature, « l’Osu Children’s Library Fund », dirigé par Kathy Knowles de Winnipeg, ait remporté le généreux prix avec Taller Colombie Sierra de las Letras Jordi i Fabra Fondation.

Le prix ‹‹IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion›› a été créé en 1986 lors du Congrès d’IBBY à Tokyo. La compagnie du Journal Asahi Shimbun subventionne généreusement le prix, qui est remis tous les deux ans à deux groupes ou institutions dont les activités apportent une contribution durable aux programmes de promotion de la lecture pour les enfants et les jeunes.

Les candidatures sont soumises par les sections nationales d’IBBY et peuvent comprendre des projets de n’importe quelle partie du monde. Le jury est composé de membres du Comité exécutif d’IBBY. Le prix de 10,000 $ US et un diplôme est remis aux lauréats lors du congrès biennal d’IBBY.

– Patricia Ocampo
Traduction: Susane Duchesne
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Picturing Canada Wins IRSCL Book Award

In 2007, Gail Edwards and Judith Saltman received the IBBY Canada Frances E. Russell Grant, which is awarded in support of a publishable work on Canadian Children’s literature, for Picturing Canada.

This notable book continues garnering accolades: at the recent International Research Society for Children’s Literature (IRSCL) Congress in Brisbane, Australia, it was announced that Gail Edwards and Judith Saltman were the 2011 winners of the IRSCL Award for Picturing Canada. The award honours a distinguished work in the field of children’s literature research published in the two years prior to the IRSCL Congress. Congratulations to Gail and Judith!
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Changes to the IBBY Canada Website

If you’ve been to the IBBY Canada website recently, you might have noticed an important change: What used to be the Join page has recently become the Join & Donate page. Now you have the option of donating to IBBY Canada, renewing your membership (or signing up as a new IBBY Canada member), and/or purchasing a subscription to Bookbird, all in one transaction! You’re also welcome to only do one of these things, of course. If you’re making a donation, you can choose to donate to the IBBY Canada General Fund, or choose to donate to specific fund you’re passionate about, such as the IBBY Children in Crisis Fund.

We are always looking for ways to make sure our website fits with the needs of our members, and that it’s easy to use, so please don’t hesitate to send feedback to We would love to hear your ideas!

– Jen Dibble
Website Chair
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Invitation to 2012 TD National Reading Summit

Mark your calendars for Vancouver for the TD National Reading Summit III from May 2–5, 2012.

As soon as speakers and program have been finalized, details will be available on the National Reading Campaign website. You can also find information on the National Reading Campaign Facebook page and Twitter feed.
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IBBY Congress: London 2012

Mark your calendars! The 33rd IBBY Congress will be held August 23-26, 2012 in London, UK. IBBY’s biennial congresses bring together IBBY members and like-minded people involved in children’s books and reading development from all over the world. There are panel discussions, seminars, and workshops on the congress theme, which is Crossing Boundaries: Translations and Migrations. The theme examines how books and stories for children can cross boundaries, countries, and cultures. The issues of globalization, dual-language texts, cultural exchange, and the art of translation will also be explored.

Major international exhibits and presentations will also be featured, including the announcement of the Hans Christian Andersen Awards, the IBBY Honour List, and the IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award.

Please visit the IBBY 2012 Congress website for more information.
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Congrès IBBY: Londres 2012

À vos calendriers! La 33e Congrès de IBBY aura lieu 23 au 26 août 2012 à Londres, Royaume-Uni. Le congrès biennal IBBY réunit les membres d’IBBY et toute autre personne dans le monde qui s’intéresse aux livres pour enfants et au développement de la lecture. Dans le cadre du congrès, vous pourrez assister à des tables rondes, des
séminaires et des ateliers sur le thème du congrès, qui est Au-delà des frontières: Traductions et Migrations . Le thème examine la façon dont les livres et les histoires pour enfants peuvent traverser les frontières, les pays et les cultures. Les questions de mondialisation, les textes bilingues, les échanges culturels, et l’art de la traduction seront également explorés.

De grandes expositions internationales et des présentations seront également présentées, y compris l’annonce des Prix Hans Christian Andersen, la Liste d’honneur d’IBBY, et le IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award.

Visitez au site web a l’IBBY 2012 Congress pour plus d’informations.

Traduction: Susane Duchesne
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Volunteer Editors Needed for CODE’s Reading Liberia Program

IBBY Canada’s partner organization, the Canadian Organization for Development through Education (CODE), needs volunteer editors for their Reading Liberia program. The aim of the Reading Liberia program is to help guide Liberian writers and artists in creating quality children’s books. The larger aim is for Liberians to have a self-sustaining children’s publishing community that creates books in which Liberian children can recognize themselves. These stories will be their stories.

Editors will mentor Liberian writers and illustrators by e-mail and phone. Manuscripts will be available for review starting September 1, and editors will be able to work on their own schedules, though the time commitment is anticipated to stretch to May 2012. This is an opportunity to help others who are passionate about connecting children with books. IBBY Canada member Kathy Stinson has shared her Reading Liberia experience here.

Please contact Meddie Mayanja, Liberia Program Manager at CODE at or call toll free 1.800.661.2633
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IBBY Canada Executive

President, Patricia Ocampo
Past President, Brenda Halliday
Vice-President, Susane Duchesne
Treasurer, Yvette Ghione
Membership Secretary, Randi Robin
Recording Secretary, Vasso Tassiopoulos
Promotions Officer, Helena Aalto
Liaison CANSCAIP, Debbie Spring
Liaison CCBC, Meghan Howe
Liaison Communication-Jeunesse, Louise Tondreau-Levert
Councillor-Quebec, Alice Lienard
Councillor-Ontario, Kate Newman
Councillor-East, Jane Baskwill
Alberta Chair, Merle Harris
Newsletter Editor, Jessica Fung
Website Chair, Jennifer Dibble
Cuba Twinning Project Chair, Patsy Aldana
Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver Award Chair, Lina Gordaneer
Frances E. Russell Grant Chair, Deirdre Baker
Hans Christian Andersen Award Chair, Josiane Polidori

IBBY (International) Executive Committee
President, Ahmad Redza Ahmad Khairuddin (Malaysia)
Vice-President, Wally De Doncker (Belgium)
Vice-President, Linda M. Pavonetti (USA)
Executive Director, Liz Page (Switzerland)
Visit for a full list of the executive

IBBY Canada Newsletter
French Translations by Susane Duchesne
Proofread (English text) by Meghan Howe and Magdalen Lau

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