'Library is where our strength is,' Sharon Draper says in lecture

Monday, October 29, 2018

Author and educator Sharon Draper visited the University of Washington on Thursday, Oct. 25, to deliver the Information School’s annual Spencer G. Shaw Lecture.

Draper has been honored as the National Teacher of the Year and is a five-time winner of the Coretta Scott King Literary Awards. She is the author of "Stella by Starlight," "Tears of a Tiger," "Copper Sun" and "Out of My Mind," a New York Times bestselling novel for almost two years.

“The library is our safe place,” she told the audience at the HUB. “The library is where our strength is. The library will always be necessary for communities of people to come together to read, to talk, to discuss, and to feel safe.”

Draper told stories about her experiences with libraries and read from her books, which include the forthcoming “Blended,” about an 11-year-old girl whose parents are divorced, causing her to split time among her blended families. Draper concluded the lecture by having the audience join hands and repeat after her as she recited a poem.

The Spencer G. Shaw Endowed Lecture Series spotlights award-winning authors and illustrators. It honors beloved UW Information School Professor Emeritus Spencer Shaw, who was an internationally known librarian, storyteller and teacher.