Penguin Young Readers Group Award

About the Penguin Young Readers Group Award
This award, made possible by an annual gift from Penguin Young Readers Group, provides a $600 stipend to up to four children's librarians to attend their first ALA Annual Conference.

Administered by:

Association for Library Service to Children logo

2013 Winner(s)

Andrea Vernola

Kalamazoo (Mich.) Public Library

If you are in Kalamazoo on a Saturday, you might want to check out Andrea Vernola’s First Saturdays at KPL.  Responding to a request from the school superintendent, First Saturdays at KPL was created to promote literacy and increase family usage of the public library.  Through creative partnering with various community organizations, First Saturdays initially attracted 300 people and continues to grow.  Collaboration with the public schools has also produced programming for literacy nights for families to showcase the library’s programming and ways to help their children with reading. Andrea also utilizes social media to connect patrons to the library’s Pinterest page filled with literacy tips, craft ideas and children’s booklists.


Heather Smith

Eastern Lancaster County Library, New Holland, Pa

Active programming, grant writing and reader recognition are just a few of the exciting activities developed by Heather Smith.  The programs include Dance Me a Story which encourages children ages 3 to 6 to act out a classic fairy tale through dance; Danger Club for children ages 8 to 12 features science experiments; and Super Readers Council provides children with discussions skills by creating book talks and book trailers.  Her grant writing provides funding for Parent-Child Workshops where early childhood professionals work with parents and caregivers and Teen Reading Lounge, an interactive literacy and art program for teens.  Additionally, Heather has presented I Can Read Wall of Fame as a poster session at the 2012 Pennsylvania Library Association Annual Conference


Janet Vogel

Frederick (Md.) County Public Libraries

Supervising a transition from a 2,500 square foot facility to a 25,000 square foot area, reorganizing the service model to adjust to additional programming with less staff, and managing the Early Start Bookmobile are just a few of the many responsibilities Janet Vogel has taken on over the past year.  She also initiated a partnership with the Frederick County Infants and Toddlers Program (FCTIP) to present Storyland: A Sensory Storyland for Little Ones complete with story time boxes which contain materials for a variety of 12 programs.  She also serves on several committees with the Maryland Library Association and Race to the Top.


Krissy Wick

Madison (Wis.) Public Library

Community outreach, collection development and collaboration with the Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) are just several of the duties Krissy Wick addresses in her position as a youth services librarian.  Her programming with Group Summer Reading Club, Overture Center for the Arts and a Prince and Princess Party sparks huge attendance.  Krissy is introducing a new program, Book a Day, which provides training with educational toys and books for parents and caregivers that focuses on Spanish-speaking families, an underserved group in the community.