The Contemporary Jewish Museum (The CJM), San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD), San Francisco Public Library (SFPL), and the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation are pleased to announce the winners of the second annual Ezra Jack Keats Bookmaking Competition on the West Coast! To promote the art and craft of original bookmaking in the classroom, students in grades K through 12 from San Francisco Public Schools were invited to design, write, and create their own books.

Nearly sixty books from twenty-three schools were submitted and reviewed by our panel of judges.  Judges ranged from authors to librarians to educators and included: Shirin Yim Bridges, author and winner of Ezra Jack Keats awards for Best Writer and Best Illustrator in 2003; Lovisa Brown, Director of Education at MOAD; James Leventhal, Deputy Director for Development at The Contemporary Jewish Museum; Judy Nemzoff, Director of Community Arts and Education at the San Francisco Arts Commission; and Valerie Reichert, Branch Librarian for SFPL.

This bookmaking contest was held in conjunction with The CJM’s ongoing series of children’s book exhibitions. Caldecott winner Ezra Jack Keats was the creator of over twenty children’s books, including the classic The Snowy Day. He was motivated to pursue a career as an author/illustrator as the result of an art achievement medal he received while attending public school in Brooklyn, New York.

Heartfelt thanks to all participating schools:

Alamo, Bret Harte, Chinese Education Center, Clarendon, Commodore Sloat, Flynn, Garfield, Grattan, James Denman, Lowell, Marshall, Mission, Muir, Rooftop, Ruth Asawa School of the Arts, Sheridan, Sunset, Sutro, Wallenberg.


Participants were honored at an awards ceremony at The CJM on Sunday, Mar 2, 2014. Winning books were on display from Mar 15–23, 2014 at the San Francisco Unified School District Arts Festival at the Asian Art Museum. All books submitted to the Competition were on display in the Children’s Room at the Main Branch of SFPL for the month of April, 2014. See photos from the awards ceremony on The CJM's Facebook page:

Collaborative Early Elementary Category

First Place

Amazing Insectanimals, Second Grade, Sheridan, Candy Cheung

Second Place (Tie)

A Counting Book of Cats, First Grade, Marshall, Stacy Moore and Judy Virtel

The Instruments of the Orchestra, First Grade,Grade, Rooftop, Julia Smith

Third Place

Apples are Not Brown, Second Grade, Chinese Education Center, Lauren Sidle

Special Recognition for Creative Non-Fiction

Big Book of Animals and Native American Adventures, First Grade, Commodore Sloat, Carol Siddle

Early Elementary Category

First Place

Pop Out Snakes, Demetrio Lignos, Second Grade, Sunset, Ingrid Brook-Kothlow

Second Place

My Map Book, Mira Kaminker, First Grade, Flynn, Deidre Elmansoumi

Third Place

My Many Colored Days, Nadeah Alexander, Kindergarten, John Muir, Larraine Seidan

Special Recognition for Cultural Education

Tips to Not Get Bored at Home, Amia Ma, Second Grade, Commodore Sloat, Carol Siddle

elementary category

First Place

Tusa’s Baby Sea Turtles, Ella Morris,Third Grade, Rooftop, Tamra Marshall

Second Place

AliensA Book of Facts, Holiday Gessler, Third Grade, Rooftop, Tamra Marshall

Third Place (TIE)

The Four Kids Who Became Volleyball Superstars, Timaureen Wilson, Fifth Grade, Bret Harte, Maureen Sullivan

The Chosen One, Eric Yu and Andrew Ngo, Fifth Grade, Sutro, Sara Cahuas 

Special Recognition for You Can Judge a Book by Its Cover

The Ohlone Girl, Hannah Wissotsky, Third Grade, Grattan, Charlotte Moraga

Special Recognition for Budding Novelist

Chosen, John Ieng, Fourth Grade, Sutro, Sarah Cahuas

Middle School CATEGORY

First Place

Sock Doll Adventure, Emily Tomlinson, Seventh Grade, Rooftop, Cynthia Sugawara

Second Place

I Am Stan Lee, Lili Huang and Angela Santelices, Eighth Grade, Denman, Vincent Toan

Third Place

Goodnight, Rabbit, Elizabeth Yip and Oona Rose-Adams, Eighth Grade, Rooftop, Cynthia Sugawara

High School CATEGORY

First Place

Starry Night, Maia Cluver, Ninth Grade, Ruth Asawa School of the Arts, Keith Carames

Second Place (tie)

Whitewash, QingQing Su, Twelfth Grade, Lowell, Patricia Copeland

Treux the Robot, Teresa Abrego, Tenth Grade, Mission High, Shannon Morris Lawson

Special Recognition for Graphic Novel

A Hunger for Flesh, Marisa Ling, Elevnth Grade, Lowell, Patricia Copeland

Special Recognition for Heartfelt Story

Mia's Grandma, Marina Kyle, Ninth Grade, Ruth Asawa School of the Arts, Keith Carames

Special Recognition for Teaching the Art of Japanese Book Binding

Staci Kavanagh, Wallenberg 


Presented in Partnership with The Ezra Jack Keats Foundation, the San Francisco Unified School District, and the San Francisco Public Library. Special thanks to our generous supporters, Flax art & design and Goosebottom Books.

School and Teacher Programs at The Contemporary Jewish Museum are made possible by Pacific Gas and Electric Company. Leadership support comes from The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation with additional generous support from Ullendorf Memorial Foundation. 

Image Credit

Header image: A Counting Book of Cats, 1st Grade, Marshall, Stacy Moore and Judy Virtel. Photo by Kathy Jaller. Image gallery photos by Kathy Jaller and Quincy Stamper.