Weekend Conference

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Conference Schedule

Keynote Speakers

David Carter


David Carter grew up in Utah, then moved to Los Angeles seeking fame and fortune, or at least a good job. After working many jobs as a graphic designer, he learned the fine art of paper-engineering and pop-up bookmaking, creating more than 85 pop-up books, including the Bugs in a Box series, One Red Dot, 600 Black Spots, and White Noise many of which have won critical acclaim and numerous awards. David says, “I work hard so that I can ski, ride roller coasters, collect wine, grow vegetables and native plants, and travel.”

Phil Bildner


Phil Bildner grew up in a suburb of New York City, graduated from Johns Hopkins University, then went to law school at New York University School of Law and became an associate at a large Manhattan law firm. He soon realized a career in the legal profession was not for him, so he went back to school and earned a master’s degree in early childhood education and taught from 1994 – 2005 in New York City. He left the classroom in 2006 in order to write full time, but continued working with kids in volunteer and service work, while still writing full time and visiting schools all over the world.

Lauren Castillo


Lauren Castillo studied illustration at the Maryland Institute College of Art and received her MFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. She is the author and illustrator of the 2015 Caldecott Honor-winning book, Nana in the City, as well as The Troublemaker and Melvin and the Boy. Lauren has also illustrated several critically acclaimed picture books, including Twenty Yawns by Jane Smiley, Yard Sale by Eve Bunting, and City Cat by Kate Banks. She currently draws and dreams in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Ethan Long


Ethan Long is a popular and internationally recognized children’s book author and illustrator with over 100 titles to his credit, which include Fright ClubTickle the Duck, One Drowsy Dragon, Big Cat, My Dad My Hero, Chamelia and the New Kid in Class, and the Theodor Seuss Geisel Award winning, Up, Tall and High!. He is also the illustrator of the board books for the best-selling picture book series Good Night, Good Night, Construction Site, written by Sherry Duskey Rinker, and the wildly successful Stick Dog and Stick Cat  series, both written by Tom Watson.

Scott Magoon


Scott Magoon calls himself a native, “New Englandah,” and has been designing, writing and illustrating books for young readers since 2003. His love of putting words and pictures together for kids grew from being a voracious young reader in the 1970s. He likes reminding himself what it was like to experience books as a child, and so he reads to his two sons and to students on visits to schools. He would like to share this advice: “Always try to put the funniest word at the end of your sentence underpants.”

Jane Yolen


Jane Yolen is an author of children’s, fantasy, and science fiction books, including Owl MoonThe Devil’s Arithmetic and How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight? She is also a poet, a teacher of writing and literature, and a reviewer of children’s literature. She has been called the Hans Christian Andersen of America and the Aesop of the twentieth century. Her stories have won the Caldecott Medal, two Nebula Awards, two Christopher Medals, the World Fantasy Award, three Mythopoeic Fantasy Awards, the Golden Kite Award, the Jewish Book Award, the World Fantasy Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Association of Jewish Libraries Award among many others.



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