Presented by the Wisconsin Library Association for distinguished achievement in children's literature.


  • Books to be considered for this award must be published in the calendar year preceding the presentation of the award.
  • The award is given for a single publication, not for the body of an author/illustrator's work.
  • The work must be written or illustrated by a person who was born in Wisconsin, or is currently living in Wisconsin, or who lived in Wisconsin for a significant length of time.
  • The work must be notable and contribute to the world of children's literature.
  • Only original works written or illustrated for children or young adults will be considered. Books that are traditional in origin will be eligible if they are the result of original research and if the retelling or interpretation is that of the author or illustrator.
  • Textbooks will not be considered.

Submissions Title, author and/or illustrator, date of publication and author's/illustrator's connection to Wisconsin can be submitted to the current Committee Chair via email. Though not required for consideration, a copy of the nominated book can be mailed to the Children's Book Award Committee c/o the WLA office. Copies sent will not be returned. Nominations must be received by April 15 of their eligible year.

Children's Book Award Committee
Franklin Public Library
c/o Briony Zlomke
9151 West Loomis Road
Franklin, Wisconsin 53132



Elizabeth Burr made outstanding and important contributions to library services for children and young adults during her 27 years of service in the state of Wisconsin. Naming this prestigious award for her, assures that her leadership, her dedication and commitment to the library profession, and her efforts in promoting an appreciation of children's literature will be remembered for years to come.

The Wisconsin Library Association honored Elizabeth Burr with the first Librarian of the Year Award in 1956. In 1973, she retired from a career which included positions with the Wisconsin Free Library Commission, the Wisconsin Library Commission, the Division for Library Services in the Department of Public Instruction where she was the Consultant for Children's and Young People's Services. Miss Burr was instrumental in founding the Cooperative Children's Book Center in Madison and directed the development of the library's collection and services throughout its first decade. She served as President of the Children's Services Division of the American Library Association and chaired the Newbery-Caldecott Committee in 1969. In addition she provided valuable service to the Wisconsin Library Association and its divisions and sections.

Elizabeth Burr was a champion of library services for children and young people, and her distinguished achievement continues to be an inspiration to all who knew her. The authors and illustrators who have been and will be named as recipients of the Elizabeth Burr Award for distinguished achievement in children's literature have the opportunity to extend the legacy of Elizabeth Burr and provide inspiration to librarians, children and young people in the future.