2nd Annual Read for the Record Panel

Building Diverse Libraries for Children: Fostering Literacy & Social Justice Through Picture Books

October 26, 2021 | 7:30 – 8:30 PM EDT | Via Zoom

Join Jumpstart for Young Children and a panel of children’s literacy experts to discuss the importance of reading diverse picture books with children in our classrooms, homes, and communities. All children deserve to have their lived experiences affirmed on the pages of the books we share with them. Jumpstart has formalized selecting Read for the Record campaign books written by BIPOC authors and that feature children of color protagonists. Through this conversation, we’ll address why this is an essential choice for all who champion early literacy and a more equitable world. Receive guidance on selecting inclusive, diverse, and affirming picture books to build empathy and connection between all children.

Learn more about Read for the Record

Moderator: Kim L. Mitchell (she/her/hers)

Co-Chair, Jumpstart National Board of Directors
Vice President, Program Development & Operations, NPower

Currently serving as the VP of Program Development and Operations at NPower, Kim is a seasoned professional with decades of leadership experience in philanthropy, human resources, consulting, and diversity and inclusion while at JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Xerox Corporation. As the former Northeast Region Executive for JPMorgan Chase Foundation, Kim led philanthropic, civic and employee engagement activities and managed a social investment portfolio of over $40 million in grants and strategic sponsorships. Her work in corporate diversity has been a valuable asset in service to the nonprofit sector. As a funder and thought partner, Kim has worked with organizations fighting housing, education and economic inequity to help identify solutions at the organizational, policy and systems level. She has served on Jumpstart’s National Board of Directors since 2013.

Panelist: Laura M. Jiménez, PhD

Associate Dean of Equity, Diversity & Inclusion  
and Sr. Lecturer in Literacy Education at
Boston University Wheelock College of Education & Human Development

Laura Jimenez’s research spans both literacy and children’s literature. Laura is a founding advisory board member of Research on Diversity in Youth Literature, a strong advocate for social justice-oriented approaches to literacy and literature, and has a special interest in issues of representation. Find Laura on Twitter.

Panelist: Meg Medina (she/her/hers)

Award-Winning and New York Times Best-Selling Author and Speaker;
Advisory Board Member, We Need Diverse Books

Meg Medina is the 2019 Newbery Medalist for Merci Suárez Changes Gears. About this sequel, she says, “I’m so excited to bring my readers into the world of the Suárez family and Seaward Pines once again. . . . New friends, new teachers, and new self-doubts. It’s been a thrill to write about all the zany things that the seventh grade can throw at a person.” The recipient of the Pura Belpré Author Award for her young adult novel Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass, Meg Medina is also the author of the novels Burn Baby Burn and The Girl Who Could Silence the Wind and the picture books Mango, Abuela, and Me and Tía Isa Wants a Car, for which she received an Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award. Meg Medina lives in Richmond, Virginia, with her family. Find Meg on Twitter.

Panelist: Jelani Memory (he/him/his)

Founder and CEO of A Kids Company About

Jelani Memory is an entrepreneur and storyteller. He is the founder of A Kids Company About, an innovative kids media company with a mission to empower a generation of kids through diverse storytelling. He is also Co-Founder of Circle Media Inc. He lives in his hometown of Portland, OR, with his wife and six kids. Find Jelani on Twitter.

Read for the Record Official Presenting Sponsor

Our 2021 Read for the Record Publishing Partner

2021 Read for the Record Sponsors

Together, we can help all children build the key language and literacy skills they need to take on the world.

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