Andrea Davis Pinkney is the 2022 Kerlan Award Winner

Andrea Davis Pinkney

(Minneapols, MN) — July 21st, 2022 — Andrea Davis Pinkney has been named the 2022 Kerlan Award winner. The Kerlan Award is given each year in recognition of an author or illustrator’s exceptional attainments in the creation of children’s literature and their generous contributions and support of the University of Minnesota Libraries’ Kerlan Collection of Children’s Literature.

The award presentation is on Oct. 11, 2022, at the University of Minnesota Andersen Library, hosted by the Kerlan Friends Board of Directors. Doors open at 5:30. This event will be livestreamed as part of the Rain Taxi Twin Cities Book Festival’s week of literary events.

Pinkney is a New York Times-bestselling author of numerous books for children and young adults, including picture books, novels, works of historical fiction and nonfiction. She is also a Coretta Scott King Award winner who writes about African-American culture. In addition to her work as an author, Pinkney has had an illustrious career as a children’s book publisher and editor, including as founder of the first African American children’s book imprint at a major publishing company: Jump at the Sun. She is currently vice president and editor-at-large for Scholastic Trade books.

“I’m honored to be selected as the 2022 Kerlan Award recipient,” said Pinkney. “The Kerlan Collection is a vibrant archive of materials that invites an insider’s exploration of how books for children are made. The collection is one of inclusion, education and community, and I’m pleased to be a part of it.”

Pinkney joins the ranks of previous Kerlan Award recipients, including such literary luminaries as Minnesota’s Wanda Gag and Kate DiCamillo, Lois Lowry, Barbara Cooney and Tomie DePaola — all of whose works and, in many cases drafts and production materials, are contained in the University of Minnesota’s Kerlan Collection.

About Andrea Davis Pinkney
Andrea Davis Pinkney is an award-winning author of more than 50 books for children and young adults. Her work has garnered multiple Coretta Scott King Book Awards, the Boston Globe/Horn Book Honor, and the Parenting Publications gold medal, among other citations. She is a four-time NAACP Image Award nominee, recipient of the Regina Medal and the Arbuthnot Honor Award. In addition, Pinkney has been inducted into the New York State Writers Hall of Fame. She and her work are the subject of the Emmy-nominated short film, “Andrea Davis Pinkney: National Author Engagement.”

Pinkney also is the librettist for the Houston Grand Opera’s “The Snowy Day Opera,” based on the beloved bestselling children’s picture book classic “The Snowy Day” by Ezra Jack Keats. She has served on the creative teams for several theatrical and audio productions based on works for young people, including those drawn from among her acclaimed books, “Martin Rising: Requiem for a King,” “The Red Pencil,” and “Rhythm Ride: A Trip through the Motown Sound.”

About the Kerlan Collection of Children’s Literature
The Kerlan Collection at the University of Minnesota is one of the world’s great children’s literature archives. The collection holds rare books, manuscripts, and original picture book art of significant children’s and young adult creators.

The Kerlan is an open access collection. Anyone who wants to explore the materials held at the University of Minnesota may do so by making an appointment in advance of their planned visit.  Contact the staff at Explore The Kerlan’s online exhibits and catalog at

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