Latino Books Award | Selection Guidelines

Become a member of our committee!

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Above: The Rhode Island Latino Books Award @RILA 2021-2022 Committee: Jennifer McGrath, Adams Public Library (Central Falls); Maria Cotto, Pawtucket Public Library (Chair); Karina O'Hollaran; Morgan Walsh; Karina Veras; Christina Cipolla; Jane Yedlin.

Their profiles: Term runs 2021 - 2023: Three are school librarians; three are public librarians; three are educators/teachers

Committee Duties

  • The committee evaluates books September through May and will select between 5 to 7 nominees per grade category for student voting by the following May.
  • Books are considered for nomination by all committee members including the chair.
  • Book title suggestions are welcome. Suggestions may be sent to the Chair, Maria Cotto at
  • After evaluating the books, the committee will make their finale selection of nominees in May.
  • The books nominated must meet the criteria and guidelines required.
  • The committee members participate in promoting the Latino Books Award at the Rhode Island Festival of Children’s Books and Authors, Kids Reading Across RI and PCL Spanish Book Fair.
  • The final list of nominees is released in September for student voting starting in April through end of May.


  • The committee meets every month September through May. This will include nine (9) meetings of discussions and one final business meeting.


  • Resignation must be sent in writing to the RILBA Committee Chair with a copy to RILA's Executive Director. A new committee member may be selected to take the position until the end of the term.
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Above: The Rhode Island Latino Books Award @RILA 2018-2020 Committee

Board Members, Officers and Duties

The Executive Committee will consist of four officers Chair, Co-Chair, Secretary, Social Media

All board members shall serve a one-year term, but are eligible for re-election to two consecutive terms.

Chair/Co-Chair Responsibilities:
  • Meet quarterly with Marta V. Martinez, Executive Director of Rhode Island Latino Arts and keep her abreast of all activity, as needed.
  • Bring eligible books to each meeting.
  • Lead suggested book review discussions
  • Work with committee to compile the curriculum guide for teachers and librarians.
  • Keep a current list of participating schools and libraries from the previous year.
  • Work with Kate Lentz (RICFB) to distribute free sets of nominated books to participants.
  • Plan for RILBA display table at the Kids Read Across RI, PCL Spanish Book Fair and the RI Children’s Book and Author Festival.
  • Submit conference and event proposals.
  • Email voting results and data to committee.
  • Post voting results and new nominations on SLRI Forums, RILA Listserv, the RI-Children/YA Google Group and participants’ listserv.
  • Coordinate award ceremony with Kate for author visit to the RI Children’s Book and Author Festival.

Secretary Responsibilities:
  • Take minutes for each meeting and distribute to RILA's Executive Director and Committee Member
  • Archive meeting minutes and other documents on google drive for everyone to access.
  • Compile the updated list of all books being considered and the group assigned to read the book.
  • Prepare, copy, and distribute an updated reading list at each meeting.

Social Media/Outreach Responsibilities:
  • Manage the RILBA Twitter Account
  • In collaboration with RILA's Executive Director, create RILBA promotional images of Current Nominees
  • Reach out to nominated authors and request a 1-2-minute video message for RILBA website

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