Dr. Claudette S. McLinn, Ed.D., Executive Director

Dr. McLinn is a retired District Supervising Librarian in Library Services for the Los Angeles Unified School District with over 34 years of experience as a teacher, librarian, and administrator in elementary and secondary education. She was the owner of a children's bookstore and also an Adjunct Professor at California State University, Long Beach where she taught graduate courses in children’s

literature and young adult literature with a focus on multicultural literature. She has been active in the American Library Association (ALA), including serving on the Newbery, Coretta Scott King, Pura Belpré, and Caldecott Award Committees. She was an inaugural member of the Kirkus Prize Committee for Young Reader's Literature and judge for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Young Adult Literature. Since 2011, Dr. McLinn created the CSMCL Día Grant with an African America Focus, which is funded by CSMCL in partnership with the Association of Library Services to Children (ALSC) and author Pat Mora, the founder of Children’s Day, Book Day/ El día de los niños, El día de los libros; often known as Día. She is a member of the Graduate School of Education and Psychology's Board of Visitors at Pepperdine University.


Dr. McLinn received her Doctor of Education degree in Organizational Leadership and Master's of Science degree in School Administration and Management from Pepperdine University. She received her Master's of Science Degree in Library and Information Science from Wayne State University. 


She is currently serving as immediate past executive chair of the Coretta Scott King Book Awards Committee, past chair of the Coretta Scott King 50th Anniversary Planning Committee, and Board of Directors, USBBY.  She has received numerous awards including the 2014 Dorothy C. McKenzie Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Field of Children's Literature presented by the Children's Literature Council of Southern California and was recently named the recipient of the Association of Library Service to Children (ALSC) 2020 Distinguished Service Award. 

Dr. Naomi Caldwell, Ph.D.

Dr. Caldwell holds a PhD in Information Sciences from the University of Pittsburgh.

She is a past-president and secretary of AILA (American Indian Library Association) and has served on numerous ALA committees including ALA Council.


Dr. Caldwell is best known for her critical evaluations on the portrayal of indigenous peoples in media for youth and is a founding member of the Youth Literature Award Committee of the American Indian Library Association. She is dedicated to the notion that indigenous people are well able to tell their own stories and their world view is valid. She is an associate professor and Coordinator of the Library Education Media online Program, Alabama State University.

Katherine F. Goodwin

Katharine Goodwin is a retired K-8 district librarian and middle school language arts teacher. She taught Literature for Children in the Library Media Teacher program for Sacramento State University, has served on the California Recommended Literature: Prekindergarten Through Grade Twelve committee, and was a 2016 recipient of the Margaret Lynch Exemplary Service Award given by The California Reading Association.


She is the author of In Search of Cinderella: A curriculum for the 21st Century. Degrees include a BA and MA from St. Bonaventure University, an MBA from Golden Gate University, as well as teaching and LMT credentials from National University and California State University, Sacramento.

Dr. Darwin Henderson, Ed.D.

Dr. Henderson is a professor emeritus of Education at the University of Cincinnati where he holds a joint appointment in Early Childhood Education and Literacy. His research interests lie in 20th century African American writers and illustrators of literature for children and youth. He is a former Chair of the American Library Association’s (ALA) Coretta Scott King Book Awards jury, a member of the Notable Children’s Books Committee, and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Committee of ALA’s Association for Library Services Advisory Board. He has served on the board of the Virginia Hamilton Conference on Multicultural Literature, at Kent State University.

Dr. Sujin B.E. Huggins, Ph.D.

 Dr. Huggins is an Associate Professor in the School of Information Studies at Dominican University, River Forest, IL. Among many professional associations, she is a member of the American Library Association (ALA), the International Research Society for Children’s Literature (IRSCL) and the United States Board of Books for Young People (USBBY). Her research interests include children’s literature of the Caribbean with specialization in children’s literature of Trinidad and Tobago. 

Lessa Kanani’opua Pelayo-Lozada

Ms. Pelayo-Lozada is a former Young Readers Librarian and the current Adult Services Assistant Manager at Palos Verdes Library District in California. She is also the Executive Director of the Asian Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA). She has served on multiple Asian Pacific American Awards for literature committees including Picture Book, Youth, and Young Adult literature. In 2012, Lessa co-authored the book, Hawaiians in Los Angeles, from Arcadia Publishing. She graduated with her MLIS from UCLA in 2009.

Lettycia Terrones

Lettycia Terrones is a doctoral student in the School of Information Sciences and the Department of Latina/o Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she researches picturebooks and children’s literature by and about Latinx peoples. Lettycia is a student representative of the American Studies Association (ASA), a member of Mujeres Activas en Letras y Cambio Social (MALCS), the Association for Library Services to Children (ALSC) and REFORMA’s Children’s & Young Adult Services Committee (CAYASC). She has served on the Ezra Jack Keats Book Award and Pura Belpé Award committees and currently reviews for The Horn Book Magazine. Her essays appear in the Bilingual Review/Revista Bilingüe, Research on Diversity in Youth Literature, and the book Nerds, Goths, Geeks, and Freaks: Outsiders in Chicanx and Latinx Young Adult Literature, published by the University Press of Mississippi.