New York Library Association. - The eBulletin

Youth Services Section and Nazareth College
Chosen as Hosts for 2013 Arbuthnot Lecture

                     Michael Morpurgo

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) announced that the 2013 May Hill Arbuthnot Committee has chosen the Youth Services Section (YSS) and Nazareth College as the hosts and site for the 2013 Arbuthnot Honor Lecture which will be delivered by Michael Morpurgo in Rochester next May.  Morpurgo is the author of War Horse which has enthralled both theater goers who have attended the play in London and across North America and movie audiences seeing Steven Spielberg’s award-winning 2011 film.

Mr. Morpurgo’s lecture will be tied to several other significant events for librarians and readers of children’s and young adult literature during Children’s Book Week.  The Arbuthnot Honor Lecture will be held at Nazareth College on Thursday evening, May 16, and will be followed by the YSS 38th annual Spring Conference on Friday, May 17, at the Holiday Inn Rochester Airport.  Conference Chair Cathy Henderson states, “Conference goers will want to stay in Rochester for Saturday’s Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival which is absolutely free and will be held on the Nazareth College campus.”

Lisa C. Wemett of Macedon compiled the application as Chair of the Ad Hoc Task Force for the May Hill Arbuthnot Lectureship established in 2011 by the YSS Board.  She partnered with Professor Laura C. S. Jones, Ph.D., of the School of Education at Nazareth College in Rochester.  The application included twenty-three letters of support from non-profit agencies, college officials, public library systems, and schools of library and information science throughout New York State.

“The Youth Services Section of the New York Library Association submitted an application that was carefully prepared and embodied incredible community collaboration from local library systems, colleges, and even the Seneca Park Zoo Society,” said Arbuthnot Chair Susan Pine of Forest Hills, NY.  “The lecture presents a wonderful opportunity for ALSC to partner with a vibrant state-wide library association.”

YSS President Joyce Laiosa says “YSS/NYLA is thrilled to bring the Arbuthnot Lecture and Mr. Morpurgo to New York State.”  Established in 1969, the lecture series was once before presented in New York in Flushing in 2002.  The lecture celebrates May Hill Arbuthnot, who served as a strong voice for children’s literature.  Each year a lecturer is chosen who will prepare a paper considered to be a significant contribution to the field of children’s literature.  The paper is delivered as a lecture and is subsequently published in Children & Libraries, the journal of ALSC.

Born in England in 1943, Michael Morpurgo was teaching when he discovered the magic of storytelling and began writing.  With more than 100 titles for young people, his books are noted for their imagination, power, and grace.  In 1976, he and his wife established the charity “Farms for City Children.”  In the last thirty years, over 50,000 children from urban areas of the United Kingdom have spent a week living and working on one of the three farms.  Morpurgo is an Officer of the Order of the British Empire and served as Britain’s third Children’s Laureate from 2003 to 2005.

Further information on tickets for this free lecture and all other related events will be posted on the NYLA Web page as details become available.