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SWON Webinar -SWON's 25th Annual Picture Book Read-In (In)
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SWON Webinar -SWON's 25th Annual Picture Book Read-In (In)

$10/$15/$25 - SWON's PBRI turns 25!

When: Thursday, September 24, 2020
10:00 AM
Where: Online
United States
Contact: 513.751.4422
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feat. Coretta Scott King Winner
Nikki Grimes

All Day Giveaways - We will be featuring trivia and "door" prizes all day for those who are able to join our author talks and discussion sessions!

 Kamala Harris: Rooted in Justice: Grimes, Nikki, Freeman, Laura ... Bedtime for Sweet Creatures: Grimes, Nikki, Zunon, Elizabeth ... Southwest Sunrise: Grimes, Nikki, Minor, Wendell: 9781547600823 ...


We may be socially distant, but we can still come together for SWON's annual picture book event -- now in its 25th year! We'll just have a read-in... in! As always, you will receive a listing of great titles published within the past few years compiled by libraries all over the Greater-Cincinnati region on a PYOC (Print Your Own Catalog) basis! We hope you can join SWON along with library and school staff from the area in a day for discussion, reading and learning! 

We'll be featuring several great author talks, with a choice in AM sessions and a keynote session with award-winning author, Nikki Grimes!



9:30-10 - Welcome and Introductions

10-10:45 - Author Talks (Meet Simran Jeet Singh or Samuael Narh!)

11:30 - 12:15 - Morning Discussion Groups (6 groups for you to choose from, more info below)

1 - 1:45 - Afternoon Discussion Groups

2 - 3 - Nikki Grimes

3 - Closing Remarks


Any time not otherwise listed, consider your time to read! Sessions are not required but CEUs will be issued for session selections and you must be present at sessions to be eligible for door prizes. Group sessions will all be organized around a theme and moderators will provide you with a list of potential topics to discuss and we encourage you to come prepared with your own titles to discuss, as well. 

You will receive an agenda with links to your sessions shortly before the date of the event. We know this is a brave new format for many of us so if you have any questions, please let us know at

Learn more about our authors at:


Discussion group choices will be repeated in the AM and the afternoon and you may choose from :


  • You Need Diverse Books (moderators Dagmar Morales & Mary Faulconer)
  • Non-Fiction Picture Books (moderator Lori Bonapfel)
  • Picture Books on Social Issues (moderators Amy Buskey & TBD)
  • Social-Emotional Learning (moderators Cindy Yeager & Kim Jones)
  • The Art of the Book (moderators Krista Hiatt & Sarah Geisler)
  • Graphic Novels for Younger Readers (moderators Lauren Brandstetter & TBD)


Meet Samuel Narh

An Interview with Samuel Narh: Strong Identity, Diverse Books, & “Maisie's  Scrapbook” – Colorful PagesSamuel Narh was born and raised in Ghana. He is a natural storyteller. He is the Author of 2 published books: Maisie's Scrapbook and Elle of Portuana. A Kite for Melia will be his 3rd picture book and it will be published in the spring of 2021.

Samuel grew up in Ghana, West Africa. As a young child, he tended a garden, and he had a passion for watching plants grow and bear fruits. He admired the beauty of nature. He also had a habit of saving money in a wooden piggy bank. He desires to share these habits, which are being lost nowadays, with children all over the world.

He believes that children need to see themselves in books that are read to them. 

He loves to paint stories that will touch and reach people across the world. 
Samuel lives in Ohio with his wife and daughter.

Samuel will be sharing with us his journey to publication. 

Meet Simran Jeet Singh

Simran Jeet Singh is a writer, scholar, activist, and educator. He is a 2020 Equality Fellow with the Open Society Foundation, and he hosts two shows: a video web series titled Becoming Less Racist: Lighting the Path to Anti-Fauja Singh BookRacism, and Spirited, an interview-based podcast that explores diverse perspectives on faith and justice. 

Simran is the author of a new children's book from Penguin Random House (Kokila) –Fauja Singh Keeps Going: The True Story of the Oldest Person to Ever Run a Marathon – the first from a major publisher to feature a Sikh story. Simran is also writing an adult non-fiction book for Penguin Random House (Riverhead) entitled More of This Please: Sikh Wisdom for the Soul

Simran serves on presidential candidate Joe Biden’s AAPI Faith Advisory Committee and Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Interfaith Advisory Committee. He is a senior fellow for the Sikh Coalition, a columnist for Religion News Service, a spiritual/religious life advisor at NYU and Columbia University, and is a visiting professor at Union Seminary. This fall, Simran is leading a course at Columbia University on Anti-Racism as a Spiritual Practice.
Singh Headshot

Simran is a highly sought-out speaker on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion. He offers programs for all ages and audiences, from preschool educators and high school students to university campuses and corporate workplaces. He is especially passionate about teaching anti-racism through building empathy and reflecting on our core values. 

Growing up as a turban-wearing Sikh in South Texas, Simran learned early that marginalized groups will not lecture their way into dignity and that empathy is truly built when people get to know each other as human beings. This realization is what brought him into the deep work of empathy-building as an approach for personal development and social change. 

Keynote: Nikki Grimes

Nikki Grimes. Photo credit: Aaron LemenNew York Times bestselling author Nikki Grimes is the recipient of the ALAN Award for outstanding contributions to the field of adolescent literature, the 2017 Children's Literature Legacy Award, the 2016 Virginia Hamilton Literary Award, and the 2006 NCTE Award for Excellence in Poetry for Children. Her distinguished works include the much-honored books Garvey's Choice, ALA Notable book What is Goodbye?, Coretta Scott King Award winner Bronx Masquerade, and Coretta Scott King Author Honor books Jazmin's Notebook, Talkin' About Bessie, Dark Sons, Words with Wings, and The Road to Paris. Creator of the popular Meet Danitra Brown, Ms. Grimes lives in Corona, California.

Nikki Grimes does not consider herself a bona fide storyteller, but, as she told an audience at the Library of Congress, she is happy to own the title Poet. Born and raised in New York City, Nikki began composing verse at the age of six and has been writing ever since that time.

In addition to her work for children, Ms. Grimes has written articles for such magazines as Essence, Today's Christian Woman, Book Links, and Image, Journal of Arts & Religion.

An accomplished and widely anthologized poet of both children's and adult verse, Grimes has conducted poetry readings and lectures at international schools in Russia, China, Sweden and Tanzania, while short-term mission projects have taken her to such trouble spots as Haiti.Kamala Harris | Book by Nikki Grimes, Laura Freeman | Official Publisher  Page | Simon & Schuster

During the 1970s, Nikki coproduced and hosted The Kid's Show on WBAI FM in New York. Later, during a six-year stint in Sweden, she hosted their radio program for immigrants, Grunslöst, and another for Swedish Educational Radio.

In 2005, Ms.Grimes was awarded the Golden Dolphin Award by the Southern California Children's Book Association, recognizing her body of work.

Nikki has been honored with the NCTE Award for Poetry and the 2016 Virginia Hamilton Literary Award from Kent State University. In 2017, she was presented with the Children's Literature Legacy Award for her "substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children." In 2020, Nikki was chosen to receive The ALAN Award for outstanding contributions to the field of adolescent literature.


2-color IMLS logoThis event is supported in part by the State Library of Ohio with federal funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.


OLC accepts up to CEUs

KDLA accepts up to 4 CEUs

ISL accepts up to LEU/TLEUs


Employees of Supporting Member Institutions - $10
Geographic Members in our Ohio service area - $15
Everyone Else - $25


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