Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Equity and Inclusion




No matter who you are, how you identify, where you live, what your abilities/disabilities are, whom you love, and what you look like, we want you here. Welcome!


In our mission to support the creation and availability of quality children’s books in every region of the world, we recognize that those books must reflect the rich diversity of our human family. The only way to do that is to support writers, illustrators, and translators that reflect every lived experience. As a global organization, we acknowledge that inclusion looks different in every corner of the world and invite you to share what “Inclusion Plus” looks like for your region and how we can better fold that into our toolkit.


Whether you are an SCBWI member; thinking about joining our community; or just here to see what we do, we would like you to know that Equity & Inclusion (EI) is an integral part of who we are, woven into every chapter of our story. Like many organizations, we find ourselves at a crossroads of how to keep improving our inclusion efforts and best share that message with you. In the past we kept our partnerships, contributions, support, and EI efforts as internal documents and hoped our goodwill would speak for itself. Transparency has evolved as a value of ours. We consider this space to be a living document, up for regular review, improvement, and sharing.


To quote Cornelius Minor, educator and literacy reform advocate (@MisterMinor), we are also “radically pro-kid”, which means championing content that supports all children and all families. If you find that equity, inclusion, belonging, civility, anti-racism, accessibility, interculturalism, religious tolerance, and understanding are not your values, then we are probably not the right organization for you. And we are okay with that. We believe that the bookshelf keeps expanding with our human family. There is room for us all. We are here to support you, cheer you on, and provide the best resources to write, draw, create, publish, and/or translate your work. We welcome you to a place of creativity and belonging and invite you to explore our EI Resource Library, values, anti-harassment, goals, teams, activities, and Custom Critique Communities for creators just like you, yes, YOU.


April Powers, Chief Equity & Inclusion Officer





SCBWI Anti-Discrimination Policy

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators celebrates difference and values inclusion. Creativity and innovation are borne of environments that support psychological safety and inclusive spaces. As an organization, we do not discriminate based on race, color, national origin, gender, gender identity (including gender expression), disability, socioeconomic status, caste, ethnicity, body size, genetic information, family/parental status, age, marital status, sexual orientation, veteran status, or political beliefs. Moreover, we aspire to grow our organization to reflect the communities we serve. This policy extends to our employees, board, faculty, volunteers, and members. For our entire Equity and Inclusion statement click here.



Here you will find some of our latest inclusion efforts. We welcome ideas, promotion, and sharing.

  • All Regional Team Members are required to participate in Inclusion Training.
  • We have established an EI Committee comprised of Board Members who review, create, and promote inclusion efforts globally.
  • Every region has been given the tools, training, and resources to establish EI Teams locally.
  • As a small nonprofit with a staff of 10, we hired our First Equity & Inclusion Officer in 2020.
  • We participated in our very first fundraising event, Giving Tuesday. 100% of these funds will go to disabled creators of children’s literature.
  • Since historically underrepresented creators have employed self-publishing in greater numbers, we recognize the value that independently published members offer young readers. This year we have established the IPM Underrepresented Marketing Grant.
  • Equity & Inclusion Book Club launches 2021.
  • SCBWI Celebrates OwnVoices Launches with the SCBWI Celebrates Queer Voices Panel, to be followed by other areas of Inclusion like: Religion, Disability, Culture, etc. #SCBWIVoices for more…
  • The Volemos: The Meg Medina Grant for Latinx/Hispanic SCBWI members who submit in English or Spanish for an opportunity for a cash prize, membership, mentorship, and participation in the Summer Spectacular.
  • We have edited The Book for inclusive language, including gender neutrality, and translated key sections in Spanish.
  • At many of our events and workshops, we host socials for members of underrepresented communities, a place where they can feel safe and find connection.
  • The revised member profile page allows members to self-identify in a number of areas so that we can know what we look like as an organization and where we can be more inclusive.
  • Custom Critique Communities launches 2021.
  • We have established a Spanish Language Committee that drives content, translation, and events for our Spanish language members.
  • Many of our regions also have an EI Corner in their newsletters. We invite you to check your region.
  • SCBWI is a founding member and sponsor of a group of key players in children’s literature dedicated to moving the needle on equity and inclusion in children’s publishing.




In the spirit of transparency, we’d like you to know who we are from our board, to our members, to our staff, where we are, and the featured faculty that we invite to our conferences and workshops. Every year gives us the opportunity to engage new talent and membership. When you fill out your member profile, it helps us better understand who we have on our team and generate the best data to share with you. At our conferences, we strive to have representation of underrepresented creators. In the last 3 years over half of our Keynote addresses and over a third of our panelists and breakout presenters were BIPOC.


Our Featured Authors/Illustrators 

Reggie Brown Thalita Dol Ken Lamug Nina Mata
Sharee Miller Shiho Pate Matthew Rivera Tara Nicole Whitaker


Our Faculty

*We have established equity guidelines for all regions and minimum standards for payment of honoraria. In addition, we created a $30,000 fund for Supplemental Honoraria, up to $350/region.



The SCBWI is not just a place to learn, we are also a place for community. Every member of our community matters and we would like to offer more resources and access wherever and whenever we can. We invite you to explore these resources and share others with our Chief Equity & Inclusion Officer. We are glad you’re here.



All of our conferences and Zoom workshops feature live ASL interpreters as well as closed captioning. We have staff on hand to make corrections to closed captioning errors live. In order to assist those who find the chat option easier than calling, we have implemented Zendesk as a customer service technology. In addition, we have funded accessibility aids for conference attendees in various regions. We will be implementing an accessibility audit of our website to ensure access for all members. Our Disability Fund is an unrestricted resource, limited only by donations, that is dedicated to creators in children’s literature. Each year, we will dedicate 100% of our Giving Tuesday donations for this purpose. We encourage you to let us know where we can improve.


Our Partnerships/Donations/Endorsements/Memberships

It isn’t enough to make statements on equity and inclusion, we also invest our time, resources, and publicity to organizations that are committed to creating quality books for all of the world’s children. Below is a list of some of the organizations and events that we have supported and/or boosted this year. We invite you to learn more about them.


Latinx Kidlit Book Festival  |  Highlights Foundation Fellows  |  Kweli  |  The Brown Bookshelf  |  We Need Diverse Books  |  Black Creators in Kidlit  |  Kidlit Latinx  |  Raising a Reader  |  Inkluded


Inclusive Scholarships, Grants, and Awards
(Many of our Regions have their own in addition to these.)

Barriers to entry are more than just skin deep. We recognized that systems of oppression and access limit creators’ ability to reach their potential in children’s literature. In addition to our efforts to establish funds and access for members and potential members, we have empowered our regions to do the same.


Disability Fund  |  New Voices in Nonfiction  |  Emerging Voices Award  |  BIPOC Scholarship  |  Multicultural Fiction or Nonfiction and/or Translation Work in Progress Grant  |  Late Bloomer Award  |  Emergency Fund  |  Kate Dopirak Craft and Community Award | Volemos: The Meg Medina Grant


Links coming soon:

  • Ezra Jack Keats Showcase Prize for Illustration
  • Independently Published Member (IPM) member Underrepresented Marketing Grant 
  • Reduced fees for members of low-income nations and students 



Hemos traducido nuestros artículos, políticas, y partes de “The Book” más importantes al español. Tenemos un equipo dedicado a SCBWI en español para asegurar que tengamos traducciones y recursos apropiados por nuestros miembros hispanohablantes. La Cometa es El Boletín de SCBWI en español. Ofrecemos la Beca SCBWI Volemos: Meg Medina por escritores hispanos y/o Latinxs. (We have translated our articles, policies and the most important parts of The Book in Spanish. We have a team dedicated to SCBWI in Spanish to ensure that we have the appropriate resources and translations for our Spanish-speaking members. La Cometa is the SCBWI Bulletin in Spanish. We have Volemos: The Meg Medina Grant for a work in progress in English or Spanish for Hispanic and Latinx creators)

EI Resource Library

We hope to not only be a resource for publishing, but also for questions you, our members, may have around OwnVoices, Lived Experience, and more. These pages represent a small amount of information available to you, but we hope that you will continue to grow your knowledge on Equity & Inclusion and share great additional resources for this living document.


Many of our regions have Equity and Inclusion Teams that keep our global vision of belonging top of mind with a local understanding for their regions. We like to call it “Inclusion+.”

Our goals are:

  • Recruiting members that represent the diaspora of our human family
  • Creating content for and by underrepresented creators
  • Offering awards, scholarships, and grants for underrepresented creators
  • Creating or implementing initiatives from the global EI Committee
  • Ensuring that the language and offerings in the region speak to inclusion
  • Creating a sense of community for underrepresented creators in your region (socials, zooms, events, etc.- an example of a fun event hosted by the New England Region)


EI Team Pages by Region