Renée Watson is a #1 New York Times bestselling author, educator, and community activist. Her books have sold over one million copies. Her young adult novel, Piecing Me Together (Bloomsbury, 2017), received a Coretta Scott King Award and a Newbery Honor. Her children's picture books and novels for teens have received several awards and international recognition. She has given readings and lectures at many places, including the United Nations, the Library of Congress, and the U.S. Embassy in Japan and New Zealand. Her poetry and fiction centers around the experiences of Black girls and women, and explores themes of home, identity, and the intersections of race, class, and gender.
Ekua Holmes is a collage-based artist who investigates family histories, relationship dynamics, childhood impressions, and the power of hope, faith, and self-determination in her work. She has created and led workshops, been a visiting artist and lecturer, and held artist residencies throughout New England. For her work in illustrating children’s literature, Holmes is the recipient of a Caldecott Honor, Coretta Scott King’s John Steptoe New Talent Illustrator Award, Robert Siebert and Horn Book awards. She is also currently Commissioner and Vice-Chair of the Boston Art Commission, along with Associate Director at the Center for Art and Community Partnerships at MassArt.