LEE & LOW BOOKS, the 25-year-old children’s book publisher that focuses on diversity, will be making two major changes to its editorial department. Longtime Vice President/Editorial Director Louise May will step back from her administrative responsibilities, while Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic Executive Editor Cheryl Klein will become Editorial Director.
Louise May, Vice President/Editorial Director, will become Editor-at-Large, effective March 1, 2017. May began her eighteen-year career at LEE & LOW as senior editor and advanced through the ranks to her current role as Vice President/Editorial Director. Her growth and commitment to diversity in children’s books parallels the success of the company. May’s invaluable contribution to LEE & LOW and its mission is evidenced by the numerous award-winning titles to her credit, including the Robert F. Sibert Medal winner Parrots Over Puerto Rico, the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor book Little Melba and Her Big Trombone, the Pura Belpré Award Honor book The Pot That Juan Built, and the Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award winner Etched in Clay. May also was instrumental in developing and launching the company’s successful educational imprint, Bebop Books. She will continue to work with her many established authors and illustrators to acquire and edit new titles.
“Louise is a crucial member of the LEE & LOW family and has played key roles in growing our company and our lists with powerful books that speak to all children,” says Jason Low, LEE & LOW’S publisher.
Cheryl Klein will join LEE & LOW as Editorial Director, also effective March 1, 2017. Klein will oversee the company’s editorial program and work closely with ownership to expand the company’s diversity mission within the school/library and trade markets. Klein has worked at the Arthur A. Levine Books imprint of Scholastic for the past sixteen years, most recently as Executive Editor. She also served as the US continuity editor for the last two books of the Harry Potter series. Her passion for diversity has been evident in many of the authors she has worked with and books she has published, including the New York Times bestselling Shadowshaper, the American Indian Library Association Youth Literary Awards Honor book If I Ever Get Out of Here, the Schneider Family Book Award-winning Marcelo in the Real World, and the ALSC Notable Children’s Book The Princess and the Pony. She was a founding member of the Children’s Book Council’s Diversity Committee and serves as an assistant coordinator of the Kweli Colors of Children’s Literature annual writers’ literary conference.
“When we began our search, we wanted someone who was on the same page as us regarding the state of diversity in publishing and what needs to be done to continue to improve representation in children’s books—Cheryl gets it. We are looking forward to working with her,” says Jason Low.
ABOUT LEE & LOW BOOKS: Established in 1991, LEE & LOW BOOKS is the largest children’s book publisher in the United States specializing in diversity. Under several imprints, the company provides a comprehensive range of notable diverse books for beginning readers through young adults. Lee & Low Books is a certified 100% Minority Owned Business Enterprise (MBE). Visit the company website to learn more.