Conference Details

Keynote Speakers

  • Denise Fleming picture

    Denise Fleming


    In third grade, I was chosen to participate in classes at the Toledo Museum of Art. Several of my paintings were included in art exchange programs with other countries. One of my paintings was chosen to be the cover of a teachers' magazine. I was published!

    Over the years, my work changed, then changed again. I now work primarily in paper—creating images by pouring colored paper pulp through hand-cut stencils. I feel that my art has come full circle from the bold, colorful paintings of childhood, through a period of tight, detailed images, and back again to bold, colorful, more childlike images.

    Papermaking for me is cathartic. Part of its appeal is that it's very physical—toting buckets of water, beating large quantities of pulp, hand-mixing huge vats of color. It's different from the Bob Cratchit-like existence that my former finely detailed style required—hunched over my drawing board with electric pencil sharpener close at hand. What other medium requires that you be up to your elbows in brilliant color?


  • April Pulley Sayre picture

    April Pulley Sayre


    April Pulley Sayre is an award-winning children’s book author of over 65 natural history books for children and adults. Her read-aloud nonfiction books, known for their lyricism and scientific precision, have been translated into French, Dutch, Japanese, and Korean. She is best known for pioneering literary ways to immerse young readers in natural events via creative storytelling and unusual perspectives.


  • Kelly Barnhill image

    Kelly Barnhill


    Kelly Barnhill is the author of the 2017 Newbury Medal winner, The Girl Who Drank the Moon, along with other critically acclaimed fantasies - The Witch's Boy, Iron Hearted Violet, The Mostly True Story of Jack, and the World Fantasy Award winning novella, The Unlicensed Magician. She is the winner of the Parents Choice Gold Award, the Texas Library Association Bluebonnet award, and a Charlotte Huck Honor. Kelly is a former classroom teacher, a former park ranger, a former bartender and a former wildland firefighter. She says she is a fast runner, a good singer, a terrible gardener, and makes excellent pie


  • Cynthia Leitich Smith image

    Cynthia Leitich Smith


    Cynthia Leitich Smith is the New York Times best-selling author of the award-winning Feral series and Tantalize series. These adventure-fantasies in the U.S., U.K., Australia/New Zealand, and additional publishers around the globe. Cynthia also is the author of several award-winning children’s books, including: Jingle Dancer, Rain Is Not My Indian Name; and Indian Shoes, all published by HarperCollins. She serves on the faculty of the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA program in Writing for Children and Young Adults and on the advisory board of We Need Diverse Books. Her husband Greg Leitich Smith is also a writer, and their books are often found together on library shelves, which she thinks is romantic!





  • Utah Valley University School of Education
  • Utah Valley University Bookstore
  • Utah Valley University Library
  • Utah Valley University University College
  • Dennis and Joan Norton Family Foundation