South Carolina Book Awards Committee


2023 JBA Committee

2023-2024 Book Award Handbook

Interested in joining a Book Award Committee?  Applications will open up in January, so please check back to apply.  

Function: The Book Award Committees are tasked with annually formulating the SCASL Book Award Program nominee book lists.

In order to accomplish this they must each read 100 - 250 titles each year and then discuss and evaluate those titles at regular meetings. The result is each year’s carefully selected reading list in each of four categories: Picture Book, Children's, Junior, and Young Adult.  Librarians, teachers, and students across the state of South Carolina owe these committee members a big vote of thanks!

Composition: The Book Award Committee has an Executive Board Representative/Chairperson and Vice-Chair to oversee all award levels as well as Chair and Vice Chair positions for each sub-committee (Picture, Children’s, Junior, and Young Adult).  Each of the Book Award Committees can be made up of a cross-section of media specialists, teachers, students, parents, administrators, public librarians, and college or university representatives.

Chairperson: The Book Award Committee Chairperson (Executive Board Representative) is selected by the SCASL President in consultation with the outgoing Chair.  Contact: [email protected]

2023-24 Chairperson:  Elizabeth Harris

2023-24 Vice Chair:  Sarah Young

2023-2024 Picture Book Award committee members: Melanie Wyndham (Chair), Jason Harris (Vice-Chair) Faith Barber, Dianne Brazell, Valerie Byrd Fort, Rhoda Coleman, Beatrice Davis, Jessica Flowers, Katy Fort, Candice Godfrey, Jennifer Infinger, Lynda Jernigan, Joanne Piazza, Layla Mckie, Elaine Park, Leigh Ramey, Robin Reeves, Elizabeth Ryan, Rebekah Shilling, Kristen Smith, Neely Swygert, Whitney Tyler, Kelly Urtz, Amanda Youmans

2023-2024 Children's Book Award committee members: Jill Tyner (Chair), Lessie Bernshouse (Vice-Chair) Diedre Ables, Christine Baker, Ellie Barrett, Colin Beaver, Jennifer Beaver, Katie Cantrell, Alison Carpenter, Eileen Conway, Adelyn Cullum, Margot David, Julie DenOuden, Stephanie Foltz, Jennifer Gibson, Tina Hurley, Emilia Jackson, Nicolas Jackson, Julianne Kaye, Kaylin Mixon, Melissa Mixon, Lili Phillipsheck,  Margaret Schwietert, Jessica Smoak, Shelby Snipes, Sara VonMinden, Michelle Weaver, Pat Wilcox

2023-2024 Junior Book Award committee members: Keri Reaney (Chair), Patti Barker (Vice-Chair) Carrie Courtney, Jenny Cox, Starena Cusack, Jill Farr, Jennifer Fisher, Cathy Garland, Mary Hall, Rene’ Howell, Season Johnson, Caitlynn Langford, Noelle Mahmood, Michelle Martin, Jennifer Neafsey, Kellie Passarello, Cali Phillipsheck, Lechel Pitts, Rose Prince, Caroline Sanders, Joanna Sargent, Miley Thomas,  Laura Ward, Fran Watson, Benjamin Young

2023-2024 Young Adult Book Award committee members:  Amy Pittsenbarger (Chair), Tiffany Rickey (Vice-Chair) Dana Anderson, Amanda Antonacci, Sophie “Dani” Brauer, Marti Brown, Ellie Burell, Jennalee Carson, Marie Davidsohn, Rose Davis, Heather Gaston, Michelle Greene, Katherine Gutteridge, Jordan Henry, Heather Loy, Lily Markalunas, Laura Matthews, Kelly McCarty, McKenna Sloan, Kay Mein, Tenley Middleton, Eden Muller, Gabriella Pace, Helen Prince, Jasmine Prince, Alondra Roldan, Lara Russell, Alex Umstead

Meetings: The Book Award Committees meet five times a year: May, August, October, December, and March (at the Annual Conference).  In addition to the general meeting at the Annual Conference, Committee members are expected to participate in their Committee's presentation session at Conference.

2023 - 2024 Meeting Dates:
  • May 13, 2023

  • August 5, 2023

  • October 7, 2023

  • December 2, 2023

  • March 2024 @ Conference

The Columbia area meetings start at 10:00 am and usually last for about 2 hours.

**In addition to the PBA, CBA, JBA, & YABA presentation sessions held at the SCASL Annual Conference, a general SCBA session is held for new/returning members and anyone interested in learning more about the book awards program.  

Duties: See the Book Awards Handbook for a complete list of duties and responsibilities for all levels and positions of the Book Award Committees.  A few of the duties/responsibilities for book award committee members include:
  • maintain current membership in SCASL
  • attend four Columbia-area meetings each year.
  • attend the SCASL conference, be present at the appropriate booktalk sessions, and work in the Book Award section of the conference store.
  • submit twelve book titles for the next year’s consideration list 
  • read the books on the list of books under consideration (between 100 – 250 titles depending upon the committee you serve) to narrow the list down to the top 20 best titles.
  • assist in the creation of an online activity guide and media for your committee's nominees.
  • present a booktalk for at least one book at the annual SCASL conference.

Last updated: 12 July 2023