Amplify Black Stories

THE NEXT COHORT

The Brown Bookshelf and the Highlights Foundation plan to run this program again in 2023.

To receive notifications when the application and sponsorship periods open, and to get other information about the Highlights Foundation, join our mailing list.


Download the 2021 Amplify Black Stories Yearbook.

Amplify Black Stories Yearbook Cover Images with Storyteller photos and Publisher logos

Program of Connection for Black Storytellers & Bridge-Building for Children’s Book Publishing Teams, to Amplify Black Stories

The Brown BookshelfIn partnership with the Highlights Foundation, The Brown Bookshelf presented a year-long program in 2021 set to amplify Black stories, with a focus on supporting Black storytellers while confronting industry challenges and fostering change.


Resources from the 2021 Inaugural Cohort

Download the press release (pdf)

Meet the Storytellers. The Amplify Black Stories inaugural storyteller cohort included debut, midlist, and vanguard Black authors and illustrators across all children’s literature genres and formats, at no cost to the storyteller. Discover the 24 storytellers in the cohort.
Cohort of 24 Storytellers

Would you like to see and purchase titles from our Storyteller cohort and members of The Brown Bookshelf?

THE LITERARY CAFE–BOOKS & EVENTS Bookstore Amplify Black Stories Book List, Curated by The African American Children’s Book Project showcases a wide range of topics and talent from the Black Literary Community, including our cohort of Storytellers and members of the Brown Bookshelf. The list includes both non-fiction and fiction titles that will empower, enlighten and enrich all readers. Visit the bookstore.

The Publishing Teams Cohort included a diverse and inclusive gathering of executives, editors, and marketing and design staff from publishing houses, agencies, and other businesses in the children’s publishing industry. Our sponsoring publishers and organizations while supporting this collaboration to dismantle the systems of racism that exist within the children’s publishing industry. 2021 supporters included:

Sustain Level Sponsors

HarperCollins Children's Books

Partner Level Sponsors

Benchmark Education     Bloomsbury     Highlights     Candlewidk Press     Astra Books for Young Readers

Strengthen Level Sponsors

Stimola Literary Studio     Charlesbridge Publishing     Workman
Reycraft Books     Random House Children's Books     Andrea Brown Literary     Penguin Young Readers

Support Level Sponsors

Children's Book Council     Lerner     Just Us Books     Renee Watson     Gallt & Zacker Literary Agency     Hachette     The Authors Guild     Serendipity Literary Agency

THE REASON FOR AMPLIFY BLACK STORIES

Amplify Black Stories is a living commitment The Brown Bookshelf’s 2020 kidlit industry Call to Action, with recognition of how influential children’s literature can be for social change. It:

  • Offers community and mentorship for Black storytellers as they bring their stories to life and provide beloved books for children in today’s world.
  • Fosters educator connections and bookseller/influencer networking to bring Black stories to growing audiences, fueling the impact sparked by Black creators.
  • Promotes publisher collaborations to craft detailed, change-making, actionable programs of commitment and support for their Black authors, illustrators, and colleagues.

THE NEXT COHORT

The Brown Bookshelf and the Highlights Foundation plan to run this program again in 2023.

To receive notifications when the application and sponsorship periods open, and to get other information about the Highlights Foundation, join our mailing list.