Mary Beth Leatherdale is a writer, editor and consultant who has been creating books, magazines and resources for children and youth for more than 25 years. The books and magazines she's worked on have won many prestigious awards and honors including an USBBY Honor Award, the Amelia Frances Howard Gibbon Illustrator's Award, Association of Educational Publishers Distinguished Achievement Awards, Blue Spruce, Brain Pickings Best Children's Illustrated and Picture Books, IRA Notable Books for a Global Society and National Magazine Award, Best New Magazine. Recently, Mary Beth co-edited Urban Tribes: Native Americans in the City, published by Annick Press. The anthology is a 2017 Red Maple Award Nominee, a starred selection in the Canadian Children's Book Centre Best Books for Kids & Teens, a Skipping Stone Honor book, and an Information Book Award finalist, Children's Literature roundtable of Canada. Mary Beth also co-edited the critically-acclaimed anthology Dreaming in Indian: Contemporary Native American Voices, which has received numerous awards including Honor Book, 2016 American Indian Youth Literature Award, Kirkus Best Books 2014 and School Library Journal Best Books 2014. Before starting her consulting business in 2011, Mary Beth was the Editorial Director for Owlkids’ magazine and book divisions and the editor of beloved magazines Chirp and OWL.
Mary Beth grew up on a farm in southwestern Ontario. Her interest in Native culture developed while attending Howard Harwich Moravian Public School (now the Naahi Ridge Public School) with students from the Delaware Nation. After completing her Honours BA in Visual Arts at The University of Western Ontario, she went on to pursue a Master of Education in the Sociology of Education from the Ontario Institute of Studies in Education (OISE), where her research focused on the delivery of anti-racist curricula.
Her work as a Publishing and Editorial Consultant for clients has provided rich opportunities for literacy research in Canada and the United States. As well, she has managed editorial projects like the McGraw-Hill iLit Digital Collection for high school students, acquiring original material by contemporary Aboriginal and regional authors such as Lisa Moore, David Groulx and Marina Nemat.
Mary Beth is the President of IBBY Canada, a non-profit organization founded in recognition of the power of children's books to bridge cultures and promote peace, working to provide children access to books and literacy programs as well as promote Canadian authors, artists, storytellers and scholars in Canada and interationally. Mary Beth lives in Toronto with her family and her dog Champ.