The Estela and Raúl Mora Award

The Estela and Raúl Mora AwardMora Award logo

Who were Estela and Raúl Mora?
Raúl (Roy) Mora came to El Paso, Texas from Chihuahua as a young boy at the time of the Mexican Revolution of 1910. Estela (Stella) was born in El Paso as were her four children. Bilingual, loving parents, Estela and Raúl took great pride in their children's successes. Raúl, a hard-working father with a great sense of humor, established and owned the United Optical Company. Stella, a homemaker who loved learning and books, helped with her husband's business, was active in her children's school (President of the PTA), and later worked part-time teaching and translating Spanish. Articulate in both languages, she was Pat’s first speech coach and editor.

dia mora parents

Pat’s parents, her sister Cissy and Pat

What is the Estela and Raúl Mora Award?
In 1996, Pat founded "Día," Children's Day/Book Day, El día de los niños, El día de los libros, a family literacy initiative that advocates daily linking all children with books through creative literacy. REFORMA, the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-speaking, became her first organizational partner. In 2000, Pat and REFORMA established the Estela and Raúl Mora Award to honor Pat’s parents and to motivate libraries to celebrate "Día," Children's Day/Book Day, El día de los niños, El día de los libros, on or near April 30th. Hundreds of annual culminating celebrations of "bookjoy" are held in libraries, schools, educational institutions, youth-serving organizations and homes across the country in April.

The 2014 award was the 20th Estela and Raúl Mora Award and the last year that REFORMA members served as judges for the Award. Pat and her family are deeply grateful to the hard-working REFORMA Presidents, and the committee chairs and members who served as judges for fifteen years.

First BookIn 2016, Día's 20th anniversary year, First Book served as judges for our Mora Awards. Winners receive a $1,000 First Book Marketplace credit and a plaque to be displayed in a public area by the winning institution, plus two honor awards of $500 in First Book Marketplace credits.

2016 Estela and Raúl Mora Award Winners

2016 Award
Sonia M. Sotomayor Early College High School
Pharr, TX

2016 Honor Winners
Broward County Schools Broward County, FL

Brownsville Independent School District Brownsville, TX

Read First Book's press release


Past Estela and Raúl Mora Award Winners

2014 Award:
Sioux Center Public Library
Sioux Center, IA
Read Pat's interview with the winner

2014 Honor Winners
Brownsville Independent School Dist., TX
Farmington Public Library, NM
Puyallup Public Library, WA

2013 Award:
Arizona State University
English Education Department
Tempe, AZ
Visit website
Read Pat's interview with the winner

2013 Honor Winners
Joliet Public Library, IL
Salt Lake County Library Services, UT
Waukegan Public Library, IL

2012 Award:
Lynden Public Library
Whatcom County Library System
Lynden, WA
Read Pat's interview with the winner

2012 Honor Winners
DC Public Library/Mount Pleasant, DC
King County Library, WA
Sacramento Public Library, CA

2011 Award:
The Santa Ana Public Library
Santa Ana, CA
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Springfield Public Library
Springfield, OR
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2010 Award:
The Arthur F. Turner Community Library
of Yolo County
West Sacramento, CA
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Pima County Public Library
Tucson, AZ

Santa Barbara Public Library System
Santa Barbara, CA

2009 Award:
San Francisco Public Library
San Francisco, CA
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Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library
Topeka, KS
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2008 Award:
Riverside County Library System
Riverside, CA

The Public Library of Charlotte/Mecklenburg County
Charlotte, NC
Read Pat's interview with the winner

2007 Award:
Broward County Library
Ft. Lauderdale, FL

2006 Award:
Kenton County Public Library
Erlanger, KY

2005 Award:
REFORMA de Utah (chapter inactive)
Día celebrations are held throughout Utah

2004 Award:
Providence Public Library Providence, RI

2003 Award:
Corvallis-Benton County Public Library
Corvallis, OR
Read more about the winner

2002 Award:
Multnomah County Library
Portland, OR

2001 Award:
El Paso Public Library
El Paso, TX
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2000 Award:
Austin Public Library
Austin, TX