Rainbow Project Committee

Charge

To select from the year’s publications, books that reflect gay/lesbian/bisexual/trans-gendered/queer-questioning (glbtq) experience for young people from birth to age 18 and to annotate selected titles.
2009 

Roster

Naomi Gonzales (Chair, February 1, 2013, to January 31, 2015)
Ms. Ingrid Henny Abrams (Member, February 1, 2013, to January 31, 2015)
Ms. Abbie M. Anderson (Member, February 1, 2014, to January 31, 2016)
Thaddeus Andracki (Member, February 1, 2014, to January 31, 2016)
M'issa Fleming (Member, February 1, 2014, to January 31, 2016)
Erin Marie Iannacchione (Member, February 1, 2013, to January 31, 2015)
Dr. Melanie Koss (Member, February 1, 2013, to January 31, 2015)
Lucas Alan McKeever (Member, February 1, 2014, to January 31, 2016)
Jesse Nachem (Member, February 1, 2013, to January 31, 2015)
John Amundsen (Staff Liaison, February 1, 2012, to January 31, 2015)
Michelle Harrell Washington (Primary Staff Liaison, February 11, 2013, to June 30, 2017)

Displaying active committee roster as of 04/24/2014. Last retrieved on 04/24/2014. Members can log in to view full contact information for committee members.

About

Rainbow Book List is created by a joint-committee of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender and Social Responsibilities Round Tables of the American Library Association (ALA).  The committee creates an annual book list of recommended GLBTQ fiction and nonfiction titles for young readers from birth through age 18.  Books on the final bibliography, to be determined at the ALA Midwinter Meeting, are published within the assigned calendar year or between July 1 and December 31 of the previous calendar year.

We invite recommendations for this bibliography from anyone not affiliated with the author or the publisher of the proposed book prior to September 30 of each year.  A short statement explaining the book's merit should accompany the recommendation.  Nominations from jury members are to be submitted by October 31.  Complete information about the jury process is available at the Rainbow Books blog.

Nominations and information can be found at the following:

Contact

Composition

The Rainbow Project Committee consists of nine members appointed from GLBTRT and SRRT membership.  Members serve two year terms.  The committee is led by a chair.  The committee chair serves a three year term consisting of the roles: chair-elect, chair, past-chair.

Procedures

General Information

Books considered for the bibliography are to have been published within the assigned calendar year or between July 1 and December 31 of the previous calendar year. Eligibility of books originally published outside the United States will be determined according to the original publication dates in the United States. Books must be distributed in the United States during the period of eligibility to be considered for the list. Revisions of previously published titles will be considered if the revision is to such an extent as to make the book substantially different from the previous edition. Any book removed from nomination at the beginning of the first ALA Midwinter Meeting is eligible for nomination during the following year if it meets the eligibility requirements. Any book nominated and discussed at ALA Midwinter Meeting will be ineligible for nomination during the following year.

Both fiction and nonfiction shall have readable text and format appealing to children and/or teens. Although the list attempts to present a variety of reading tastes and levels, no effort will be made to balance the list according to subject, area of interest, age, or genre. Annotations for the bibliography are written so as to attract the young reader. The American Library Association Rainbow Project prepares an annual annotated bibliography of books displaying commendable literary quality that relate to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning experience and are recommended for young readers from birth through age 18.

The Rainbow Project is a joint undertaking of GLBTRT and SRRT (Social Responsibilities Round Table) with the expectation of continued monitoring by the ALA Office for Literacy and Outreach Services (OLOS). Rainbow Project Policies and Procedures will in no way conflict with the GLBTRT Bylaws and the SRRT Bylaws.

Eligibility of Books

Books considered for the bibliography are to have been published within the assigned calendar year or between July 1 and December 31 of the previous calendar year. Eligibility of books originally published outside the United States will be determined according to the original publication dates in the United States. Books must be distributed in the United States during the period of eligibility to be considered for the list. Revisions of previously published titles will be considered if the revision is to such an extent as to make the book substantially different from the previous edition. Any book removed from nomination at the beginning of the first ALA Midwinter Meeting is eligible for nomination during the following year if it meets the eligibility requirements. Any book nominated and discussed at ALA Midwinter Meeting will be ineligible for nomination during the following year.

Both fiction and nonfiction shall have readable text and format appealing to children and/or teens. Although the list attempts to present a variety of reading tastes and levels, no effort will be made to balance the list according to subject, area of interest, age, or genre. Annotations for the bibliography are written so as to attract the young reader.

Rainbow Project Committee

The committee consists of nine members appointed from GLBTRT and SRRT membership, serving two year terms, and led by a chair.  Members will serve two year terms that begin and end at the conclusion of the ALA Midwinter Meeting.  All members are appointed from GLBTRT and SRRT membership by the by the GLBTRT Chair-elect/Chair and the SRRT Coordinator.

The chair-elect serves in that capacity for one year and then assumes the chair position the following year.  During the year following service as chair, the past chair will serve as a resource to the new chair.  The setting chair-elect coordinates committee membership to nominate the next chair-elect by an anonymous process.  The nomination must be received by the GLBTRT Chair-elect/Chair and SRRT Coordinator by December 1.  The GLBTRT Chair-elect/Chair and SRRT Coordinator appoints a chair-elect from committee membership or GLBTRT/SRRT membership by January 1.

When possible, appointments will maintain a balance of geographical regions of the United States, racial and ethnic groups, types of libraries, and gender.  Reappointments are allowed only in extenuating circumstances.  Following two terms (four years), a one-year hiatus is required before a member is eligible for reappointment.

Bibliography Selection Process

All Project jury members will nominate books; all field submissions are to be nominated by a Project jury member. Field submissions may be sent to any Rainbow Project jury member listed on the GLBTRT Contacts page. Jury members shall read the books before nominating them. Nominations will be submitted in the following format: Author. Title. Ilus. by (if applicable). Year. Pp. Publisher, price. (ISBN-13). Grade level.

The person submitting a nomination should carefully check the bibliographic information for accuracy and eligibility. A one- or two-sentence annotation, suitable for publication with the list, is to be included with all nominations. If the primary character(s) is (are) not glbtq, a brief explanation should detail why the title should be considered for the list. These nominations shall be sent electronically to all jury members of the Project and are to be received by midnight on October 31. Field submissions must be provided by September 30 to be considered for nomination.

Recommendations for nomination will not be accepted from the publisher of a proposed book, agents or representatives of the author, or anyone else who may stand to gain directly from the nomination of the book. Jury members of the Rainbow Project may not nominate a book that they have contributed to, edited, or in any other way been affiliated with, or a book coauthored or edited by a member of their immediate family or anyone with whom they currently share a household.

Review copies of each nominated title will be requested from its publisher for each Project member. During the course of the year, Project jury members actively participate in ongoing discussions of books, both those nominated and those being considered for nomination. Project jury members are also expected to read book reviews of nominated books, either by consulting review sources directly available to them or by reading reviews posted or otherwise distributed by Project jury members.

Meetings

All Project meetings are open to persons with guest badges. These observers may speak if recognized by the chair. Before the committee discusses each suggested title, an opportunity will be given to observers to make short comments about the books (two minutes or fewer per observer); the Chair reserves the right to cut short the comments if necessary. Publishers’ representatives are requested to refrain from participating in discussion or asking for comments about their own books.

During the last meeting at ALA Midwinter Conference, the jury will jointly prepare final annotations, verify bibliographic information, and write the introduction for the list.

Voting

Project jury members will nominate titles, discuss nominations, and participate in straw polls electronically prior to the ALA Midwinter Meeting. This nonbinding vote indicates the status of books within six weeks before the ALA Midwinter meeting. The results of this straw poll will be compiled and disseminated to the jury members of the Project within a week.

After the results of the straw poll, a book may be withdrawn by the person who nominated the title. If another Project jury member wishes to keep that title on the list for discussion, that person must indicate this; otherwise the book is dropped from the nomination list.

The final discussion and selection of the bibliography will be conducted at the ALA Midwinter Meeting. Decisions will be reached by consensus, meaning that each member accepts the decision. If the group cannot come to consensus, the decision will be made with no more than one person dissenting. For a book to be put on the list, at least five jury members must have read the book and agreed to its inclusion. Consideration for the final list is not based on a certain number of fiction or nonfiction titles, nor is it based on a certain number of titles for different age groups. Only jury members attending the ALA Midwinter meeting and participating in all discussions about the book will be allowed to vote on a specific title. Jury members can vote only on books they have read in their entirety. The top four or five and the top ten books are also selected for purposes of highlighting exceptional titles for publicity. After the final discussion and selection, titles are then annotated by the committee.

Announcement of the Rainbow Project Bibliography

Following its last meeting, the committee will provide the ALA Public Information Office with the final list of selected titles in the form of a press release. The press release will be posted on the Project website and on the Project MySpace and Project Facebook made available to GLBTRT and SRRT for their newsletters and websites, and provided to various sources such as magazines directed toward teens, GLBTQ issues, and library professionals and discussion groups on the Internet. The final bibliography, or a portion of it, will also appear in a spring issue of Booklist.

Requirements/Duties of Rainbow Project Jury Members

Jury members must be members of the American Library Association, the GLBT Round Table, and the Social Responsibilities Round Table. They must commit to attending the Rainbow Project meetings at the ALA Midwinter Meeting.

Jury member responsibilities:

  • Maintain knowledge of current glbtq publishing, actively seeking appropriate books.
  • Read and critically evaluate current glbtq books.
  • Submit Rainbow Project nominations of glbtq books through the year.
  • Participate in jury discussions of glbtq books.
  • Read books nominated for the Rainbow bibliography.
  • Communicate book reviews and other pertinent information regarding glbtq books with other jury members.
  • Follow the rules and procedures of the Rainbow Project and meet the deadlines established by the jury chair and chair-elect.
  • Perform other duties that the jury chair and chair-elect deem necessary.

Requirements/Duties of the Rainbow Project Assistant

The function of the Assistant includes the following:

  • maintain electronic sites for the Project;
  • help with publicity;
  • and represent the Project in SRRT and/or GLBTRT meetings as necessary.

Requirements/Duties of the Rainbow Project Chair and Chair-elect

The Project Chair and Chair-elect must be members of the American Library Association, the GLBTRT, and the Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT). They must commit to attending the Rainbow Project meetings at the ALA Midwinter Meeting.

The chair and chair-elect will work together in a collaborative manner.

The chair and chair-elect share the privilege and responsibility of reading, nominating, discussing, and voting for books with the Project jury members as described under Requirements/Duties of the Rainbow Project Jury Members.

In addition they share the following responsibilities as mutually agreed upon:

  • Ensure that the Rainbow Project complies with policies and procedures.
  • Maintain an accurate database of all nominated titles.
  • Communicate frequently with jury members regarding nominated books.
  • Report to OLOS, GLBTRT, and SRRT as needed.
  • Provide publicity as needed regarding the Project and its bibliographies.
  • Facilitate Project discussion.
  • Communicate with publishers regarding the mission of the Project and request preview copies of books for jury members.
  • Provide the final bibliography to publishers.
  • Work with GLBTRT and SRRT leadership to establish meeting location and times at ALA conferences and midwinter meetings.
  • Coordinate a breakfast at ALA Annual Conference during even years.
  • Attend to all other business matters and duties as deemed necessary by the Rainbow Project jury.

During the year following service as chair, the past chair will serve as a resource to the new chair. That person may be, but is not required to be, a voting Project member.

Revision History

Origin

The Rainbow Project was created as a grass-roots effort in 2007 to provide young people with books that reflect GLBTQ individuals, groups, and experiences. Although many more books with glbtq content are available to this audience than in the past, many of these are not identified as such, necessitating such a bibliography. The Rainbow Project was originally a Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT) task force but became affiliated also with Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Round Table (GLBTRT) during the ALA Midwinter Meeting 2009.

GLBTRT Membership Meeting Documents, 2009 ALA Annual Conference:

  • Membership Meeting Minutes: Not Submitted By Secretary
  • Membership Meeting Agenda: [pdf: 68kb]

Project Proposal Documents:

  • Amendment to GLBTRT Bylaws for 2009 ALA Annual Conference, GLBTRT Membership Meeting: [pdf: 31kb]
  • 2009 Committee Procedures: [pdf: 82kb]

Get Involved

Serving on a GLBT Round Table committee requires membership in ALA and GLBTRT.  Learn more by visiting our membership page.  To for a committee visit our volunteer form page.