Acclaimed Children’s Book Author to Receive Award at The University of Scranton

Jul 2, 2013

 The University of Scranton’s Friends of the Weinberg Memorial Library will honor Susan Campbell Bartoletti Ph.D., G’82 with the 2013 Royden B. Davis, S.J., Distinguished Author Award.

The award ceremony will be held on Saturday, Sept. 7, in the McIlhenny Ballroom of the DeNaples Center. The reception begins at 5 p.m. with dinner and the award ceremony following at 6:30 p.m. Reservations are required to attend the ceremony.

A book signing, which is open to the public, free of charge, will take place from 4 to 5 p.m. in the fourth-floor reception area of the DeNaples Center.

The author of poetry, short stories, picture books, novels and nonfiction for young readers, Dr. Bartoletti has received some of the most prestigious awards in children’s literature. These honors include the Newbery Medal from the American Library Association for “Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler’s Shadow;” the Orbis Pictus Award for Nonfiction from the National Council of Teachers of English for “Black Potatoes: The Great Irish Famine, 1845 to 1850;” and the Golden Kite Award for Nonfiction from the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators for “Growing Up in Coal Country.” In 2009, she won The Washington Post/Washington Children’s Book Guild Nonfiction Award for her body of work.

Dr. Bartoletti’s most recent book, “Down the Rabbit Hole,” is the latest installment in Scholastic’s “Dear America” series. Targeted for middle-grade readers, the series introduces history through the diaries of fictional girls living in various eras. “Down the Rabbit Hole” chronicles the experiences of 14-year-old Pringle Rose, who “witnesses” the Great Chicago Fire in 1871.

In addition to her successful writing career, Dr. Bartoletti has taught students from middle school to graduate school. She has been on the faculty of graduate programs at Pennsylvania State University, University Park; Spalding University, Louisville, Ky.; and Hollins University, Roanoke, Va. She taught courses in creative writing as a distinguished scholar/artist at Marywood University in 2002; children’s and young adult literature as an adjunct faculty member in the Department of English at The University of Scranton in 1997-1998; and composition in the Department of English at the Keystone College from 1984 to 1986.

Dr. Bartoletti also has written several professional articles, co-authored two educational textbooks, and made numerous conference presentations, including keynote addresses. She has served in leadership positions for many regional educational and literary organizations.

In 2001, Dr. Bartoletti earned a Ph.D. in English from Binghamton University, Binghamton, N.Y., where she won the Excellence in Research award for her doctoral dissertation. She also earned a master’s degree in English from The University of Scranton and a bachelor’s degree from Marywood University.

The Distinguished Author Award Series began with the Friends of the Weinberg Library’s desire to recognize and honor the work of fiction and nonfiction authors. The Friends also saw it as an opportunity for authors to share their literary pursuits and impressions with residents of Northeastern Pennsylvania. The annual event helps the Friends of the Library Endowment Fund, which supports special gifts for the Weinberg Library collections and services.

Past recipients of the Distinguished Author Award have included Emmy, Oscar and Golden Globe-winning author and actor Jack Palance, Malachy McCourt, Mary Higgins Clark, Carol Higgins Clark, Lisa Scottoline, Linda Fairstein, James Grippando, Phillip Margolin, Mary Gordon, William Bernhardt, Steve Berry and Jay Parini. The award was first presented in 1997.

For further information or to reserve a ticket for the award event, contact Kym Fetsko at (570) 941-7816 or

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