Frances E. Russell Grant

The Frances E. Russell Grant was established by the late Marjorie Russell in memory of her sister, a long-time supporter of IBBY Canada. The $1,000 grant is intended “to initiate and encourage research in young people’s literature in all its forms” and is given in support of research for a publishable work (a book or a paper) on Canadian children’s literature.

Criteria and Submission Information

The grant supports scholarly work only; works of fiction are not eligible. The types of works that are eligible for the grant include:

  1. Studies of individual authors and their work, especially if considered in their socio-historical context.
  2. Comparative studies of two or more authors, which illuminate their stylistic differences or consider their social and historical approaches.
  3. Subject/Genre overviews, for example, children’s fantasy or historical fiction.
  4. Biographical studies of Canadian children’s authors or illustrators.
  5. Studies of Canadian children’s illustrators and their work.
  6. Related subjects including contemporary theoretical approaches to the study of Canadian children’s literature.

The following materials are required: a proposal, a curriculum vitae, a synopsis of methods and stages by which the applicant will pursue the research, and a summary of what the funds are to be used for. Within a year of receiving the grant, the recipient will submit a report for inclusion in the IBBY Canada newsletter. The competition is open to Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

The deadline for proposals, which may be submitted in English or in French, is January 15, 2023.

Please send proposals as e-mail attachments to: Deirdre Baker, Frances E. Russell Grant Chair, at

Proposals can also be sent by mail to:

IBBY Canada
c/o The Canadian Children’s Book Centre
Suite 200, 425 Adelaide Street West
Toronto, Ontario M5V 3C1
Attention: Deirdre Baker, Frances E. Russell Grant Chair

A jury, appointed by IBBY Canada, will select the successful applicant.

Past Winners of the Frances E. Russell Grant

  • 2021 – Allison Hudson (Press Release)
  • 2020 – Olivia Robinson (Press Release)
  • 2018 – Samantha Cutrara (Press Release)
  • 2016 – Ruth Bradley-St. Cyr (Press Release)
  • 2015 – No grant given
  • 2014 – Erin Spring (Press Release)
  • 2013 – Bonnie Tulloch (Press Release)
  • 2012 – Beverley Brenna
  • 2011 – Paulette Rothbauer
  • 2010 – No grant given
  • 2009 **- Vivian Howard
  • 2007 – Gail Edwards and Judith Saltman
  • 2006 – Michelle Mulder
  • 2005 – Michelle Cobban
  • 2004 – Krista V. Johansen
  • 2003 – Joanna Emery
  • 2002 – Lynn Westerhout
  • 2001 – Françoise Lepage*
  • 2000 – Sydell Waxman
  • 1999 – Mavis Reimer and Anne Rusnak
  • 1998 – No grant given
  • 1997 – Carole Carpenter
  • 1996 – Suzanne Pouliot
  • 1995 – Jean Stringam
  • 1991 – Linda Granfield
  • 1990 – Judy Arter
  • 1989 – David Jenkinson
  • 1988 – Dr. Ronald A. Jobe
  • 1987 – Joan Weller
  • 1986 – Judith Saltman
  • 1985 – André Gagnon
  • 1984 – Jacques La Mothe
  • 1983 – Shirley Wright
  • 1982 – Dr. Catherine Ross/ Dr. Corrine Davies

*Françoise Lepage (1946-2010) It is with sadness that we announce the passing of Françoise Lepage, recipient of the Russell Grant in 2001. Françoise taught children’s literature in the University of Ottawa’s French Department. Her children’s novel Poupeska won the 2006 Trillium Book Award for Children’s Literature and was a finalist for the 2006 Governor General’s Award for Children’s Literature. Her award-winning Histoire de la litterature pour la jeunesse: Quebec et francophonies du Canada was published in 2000, followed by her Dictionnaire des auteurs et des illustrateurs.