Board of Directors

Roster of Board Members  I Standing Board Committees  I  Additional Information

Meet YALSA's 2022 - 2023 Board of Directors.

This listing includes their name, email address, Twitter handles and committee liaison responsibilities in parenthesis. Tweets from these individuals are coming from their role as private citizens, and not as YALSA Board Members.

*denotes this position also serves on the Executive Committee



Franklin Escobedo*, President 

Franklin Escobedo is the former Community Services Director for the City of Larkspur, CA, overseeing the Larkspur Library and Larkspur Recreation.  He began his career as a Young Adult Services Librarian for the City of Oceanside and has served on numerous YALSA committees, juries, and taskforces, from Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults, Outstanding Books for College Bound, The Printz Award Committee 2016, and as Secretary of the YALSA Board.  





Coleen Seisser*President-Elect

Colleen Seisser is the Assistant Director at the Westmont Public Library in Westmont, Illinois and a YALSA Member since 2008. She has worked in libraries since high school and was a teen librarian for ten years before moving into supervising and now administration. Colleen is also an audiobook fanatic, gardener, & generally crafty person. She has volunteered in many roles for YALSA, most notable for Amazing Audiobooks, Division and Membership Promotion, and as a Director at Large for the YALSA Board from 2018-2021.





Kelly Czarnecki*Past President

Kelly Czarnecki has worked +10 years for the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library at ImaginOn in the Teen Department. She moved from the midwest to Charlotte for a Librarian position and then became the manager of the Teen Loft three years ago. Kelly is an author of books and articles, primarily regarding teens and technology in the library. 



Kate Denier*, Fiscal Officer. Twitter: dulibkat

Kate Denier is the Senior Branch Manager for the North Central Branch of The Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County. She has over ten years of experience in youth services and has been an active member of YALSA since 2005.





Elizabeth Nebeker*, Division Councilor.

Liz Nebeker is a Reference Librarian at Lone Star College-CyFair, a joint-use library located in Houston. She is a former high school librarian and middle school language arts teacher. She has over 20 years experience working with teens. She has been an active member of YALSA since 2016. She is an avid YA reader, and has served on numerous YA reading list committees in ALA and TLA (Texas Library Association). 




Joel Shoemaker*, Secretary.

Joel Shoemaker has an MLIS from Dominican University and has been the library director for the Illinois Prairie District Public Library for more than four years. Previously, he was the library director for the Oakwood Public Library District, also in Illinois. In his spare time, he enjoys participating in community theatre and has been a magician since he was seven years old. He is married and has a dog named Maximus. He longs one day to have a smaller dog called Minimus.





Abby Phillips, Director. Twitter: abigailleigh
(Writing Award Jury, YA Symposium Local Arrangements TF)

Dr. Abigail Phillips is an Assistant Professor in the School of Information Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She recently completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Department of Instructional Technology and Learning Sciences at Utah State University. Dr. Phillips received her Ph.D. from the School of Information at Florida State University in 2016.





MattDawn McMillan Layne, Director.

Matt Layne is the Patron Experience Librarian at O'Neal Library in Mountain Brook, Alabama. He most recently served as the Young Adult Librarian at O'Neal for 14+ years. Matt began his library career as a children's storyteller in the Birmingham Public Library system in Alabama. He has served on the Morris and Printz Award Committees, and he is the President-elect of The Alabama Library Association. Matt believes in empowering teens and providing teens with the space and tools they need to succeed. Matt Layne's poetry collection, Miracle Strip, is forthcoming from Brick Road Publishing.




Susannah GoldsteinSusannah Goldstein. Director. Twitter: @SusInTheLibrary

Susannah Goldstein is a school librarian who has worked in both public and independent schools, at all age levels. She is currently a librarian at The Brearley School in New York. Susannah reviews YA literature and writes about research instruction for School Library Journal. Susannah lives in New York City (Bronx) with her family.





Josie Laine Andrews, Director.

Josie Laine Andrews is the teacher-librarian at Nevada Union High School, a rural school located in north-eastern California. She began her library career in a museum library in Boston, MA and worked in academic and public libraries before following her passion for working with youth. She is dedicated to supporting intellectual freedom, amplifying youth voice, and supporting teen mental health. She works to create library spaces that are inclusive hubs that meet the diverse needs of the teen community. Josie serves on local and state library committees and began working with YALSA in 2017 as a participant in the Future Ready for Youth program. 




Melissa Malanuk, Director. 

Melissa Malanuk is the Coordinator of Teen Services for Queens Public Library. Prior to being promoted, she was a young adult librarian at different Queens Public Library locations.  As the Coordinator of Teen Services who wears a lot of different hats, including trainer, program developer, advocate and cheerleader, Melissa has been a member of YALSA for 12 years and has served on a variety of committees and task force, including chairing the William C. Morris Award, Quick Picks for Teens, Organizations and Bylaws and Financial Advancement.  



Morgan Brickey-Jones, Ex-Officio Member.

Morgan Brickey-Jones has been a librarian for 10+ years and is currently the K-12 Librarian at University of Texas at Arlington. Prior to working in an academic library, Morgan was a children’s librarian and young adult librarian in public libraries. Morgan has been on a few book committees, including the Texas Bluebonnet Selection Committee (2018-2020) and the YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers (2015-2018) and was the 2018 recipient of the MAE Award for Best Literature Program for Teens. Morgan is passionate about books and reading and is currently learning the ins and outs of 3D printing and printmaking!



Siva RamakrishnanEx-Officio Member.

Siva Ramakrishnan is the Associate Director of Young Adult Services at The New York Public Library where she oversees a team that supports teen-serving staff across NYPL's 88 neighborhood branches through programming, resources, and professional development. She has worked with teens in a variety of educational settings for over 20 years, and enjoys thinking about how libraries can be dynamic spaces where teens can connect with their peers and community, and engage in creative, self-directed learning.





Ziba Pérez, Ex-Officio Member.

Ziba Pérez serves as the YA Librarian with the Los Angeles Public Library. She is a zine enthusiast who also helped to create a circulating zine collection at the Long Beach Public Library, where she worked previously, as well as at LAPL. She helped organize Long Beach Zine Fest and she is currently helping to organize L.A. Zine Fest 2023. As a member of the California Library Association, Ziba co-chaired the 2022 Beatty Award Committee which had the pleasure of awarding their first YA Award in Literature to Malinda Lo. Ziba is also a member of REFORMA.



Gail Tobin , Ex-Officio Member.

Gail Tobin is the Hanover Park Branch Manager for the Schaumburg Township District Library in Illinois. Prior to that she worked as a children’s librarian. She has been an active member of YALSA since 2000 and previously served as a YALSA Director-At-Large as well as on numerous process and award committees, including the Margaret A. Edwards Award, Morris Award and Great Graphic Novels.  She is also active in ALA as a Councilor-At-Large.





Melanie Wachsmann, Director.

Melanie Wachsmann is the Library Director at Lone Star College-CyFair, a joint-use library, in conjunction with the Harris County Public Library system, in Cypress, TX. In her 20 + years as an educational professional—serving as a high school teacher and librarian, public librarian, and community college librarian—she has always maintained tight-knit relationships in her community and local schools via outreach, book clubs, and dual credit library instruction. Melanie continually serves the library profession through her work on ALA, state, and local committees. In her spare time, she enjoys listening to the latest YA audiobooks (through the library, of course!) on 2x speed, playing board games with Monte, and snuggling with Piper, her furbaby. 




Stacey Shapiro, Director.

Stacey Shapiro is the YA/Programming Librarian for Cranford Public Library. She has served on multiple YALSA committees, including the 2019 Printz award committee, and has worked with teens for over eight years.





LaMoya N. Burks*, Board Liaison.

LaMoya N. Burks is the Interim Executive Director of YALSA.




Board Group Work on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion: 

  • Committees, Scholarships, and Professional Development: Kate Denier, Liz Nebeker, Melanie Wachsmann (lead) Stacey Shapiro
  • Outreach: Joel Shoemaker
  • Engagement: Abigail Phillips and Susannah Goldstein

Additional Information