Interviews with the 2009 Mora Award Winners

Two public libraries won this year’s Mora Award, recognizing their exemplary programing for El día de los niños/El día de los libros, Children’s Day/Book Day. The libraries are San Francisco Public Library, CA and Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library, KS. Congratulations to these libraries and and to all the libraries who applied for the award and who celebrated Día!
We’re especially pleased that the winners of the 2009 Mora  Award gave us their time for brief interviews, telling us and you — about their reactions to winning, plans for the monetary award and Día planning tips. Each library’s interview will be in two parts. First, we’ll hear from Judy Rohr, Outreach Storyteller and Spanish Resource at Topeka & Shawnee County.

1. How did you feel when you heard you were one of the 2009 winners?
When I saw on my e-mail that I was one of the 2009 winners of the Mora Award, I screamed with joy. Everyone in the next room heard me. There were only 2 or 3 people in my department to tell and they caught the brunt of my yell. Then I ran to the book selectors division and told them. I, then, e-mailed everyone who participated in El Día of 2009. In others words, I was flying high.
2. Tell us why you applied for the Mora Award.
I applied for the Mora Award in hopes that I could share the honor with all of the agencies and supporters of El Día de los Niños/El Día de los Libros. My supervisors and director have been very supportive in giving me the leeway to set up the program as I choose. I’ve had many agencies and businesses that have gotten on the band wagon in support of bilingualism and literacy. I’ve felt that we all worked hard putting together a wonderful book fiesta for children and their families. What an honor for our small city and county library!

3. Please share what you plan to do with the monetary award. Tell us about some of your plans to celebrate Día in April 2010.
With the award money, I plan to purchase books for give-aways, and books for circulation, in particular bilingual books. I would like to start a collection of bilingual read- alongs. Last year we gave away a Tagged Reading System for the raffle; so I hope to do that again.
Our fiesta for 2010, is just beginning to take form; but we will again have a bilingual puppet show (last year we did the “Three Little Pigs”), a carnival with agencies that offer educational programs and literacy activities for families, and musical entertainment from local groups. We would also like to include an author or storyteller if possible.

Check in tomorrow for the remainder of the interview with Judy Rohr. These interviews will also be posted on Pat’s web site.

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