Residency Visiting Writers & Faculty Each residency, our distinguished faculty are joined by special guests. The line up of special guests typically features locally published authors as well as writers from around the country, including a very special guest author chosen by the graduating class to give the commencement address. Guests also come from the business side of the writing and publishing world, including agents, editors, and publishers. Visiting Writers/Special Guest for January 2015: Linda Sue Park is the author of several novels and picture books, including A Single Shard, the 2002 Newbery Medal winner. She writes fiction and poetry for both adults and young readers. Her most recent titles are A Long Walk to Water, a New York Times bestseller and winner of the Jane Addams Peace Prize; Trust No One, Book #5 in The 39 Clues/Cahills vs. Vespers series; and the picture book Xander's Panda Party, illustrated by Matt Phelan. Linda Sue knows very well that she will never be able to read every great book ever written, but she keeps trying anyway. Visit her website at www.lindasuepark.com and follow her on Twitter @LindaSuePark. Matt de la Peña is the author of five critically-acclaimed young adult novels: Ball Don’t Lie, Mexican WhiteBoy, We Were Here, I Will Save You and The Living. He’s also the author of the award-winning picture book A Nation’s Hope: The Story of Boxing Legend Joe Louis (illustrated by Kadir Nelson). Matt received his MFA in creative writing from San Diego State University and his BA from the University of the Pacific where he attended school on a full basketball scholarship. de la Peña currently lives in Brooklyn, NY. He teaches creative writing and visits high schools and colleges throughout the country. Visit Matt's website. Sarah Park Dahlen is an Assistant Professor of Library and Information Science at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota. She teaches courses on children’s and young adult materials, children’s and young adult library services, storytelling, social justice, and library and information science. Currently, she is examining representations of transracially adopted Koreans in children’s literature and the information behaviors of transnationally adopted Koreans. She co-edited a children’s and young adult multicultural literature textbook with Dr. Jamie Naidoo titled Diversity in Youth Literature: Opening Doors Through Reading (ALA Editions, 2012). Her next project examines race in the Harry Potter series. Visit Sarah's website. Tina Wexler is an agent at ICM Partners, a full service agency with offices in Los Angeles and New York. Her list is predominately middle grade and young adult fiction. She represents picture books for existing clients and is interested in reading more non-fiction for children and adults. She has a fondness for modern folklore, non-linear storytelling, magical realism, humor, weepies, and most anything with a feminist slant. Current and forthcoming titles include Laughing at My Nightmare, a YA memoir by Shane Burcaw; Pointe by Brandy Colbert; Nightbird by Alice Hoffman; and The Cost of All Things by Maggie Lehrman. Tina has an MFA in poetry and lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two sons. (Twitter @tina_wexler) Mary Logue has published four books of poetry, a young adult novel, numerous mystery series for adults and young adults, nonfiction, and a picture book, Sleep Like a Tiger, which was a Caldecott Honor Book. See Mary's full faculty profile. Deborah Kovacs is Senior Vice President and Editorial Director of Walden Pond Press, a joint imprint of HarperCollins and Walden Media, specializing in middle-grade fiction. Notable recent and forthcoming books on the list include Breadcrumbs and The Real Boy by Anne Ursu, Platypus Police Squad by Jarrett J. Krosoczka, the Guys Read library series edited by Jon Scieszka, the Fourth Stall series by Chris Rylander, the Hero’s Guide series by Christopher Healy, Neversink by Barry Wolverton, The Fellowship for Alien Detection by Kevin Emerson, Sidekicked by John David Anderson, and The Girl from Felony Bay by John Thompson. Deborah has also been editorially responsible for Walden Media’s partnership with Penguin Books for Young Readers. Notable acquisitions there include Savvy and Scumble, both by Ingrid Law. Deborah is the author of more than thirty children’s books, both fiction and nonfiction. Returning Faculty for January 2015: Marsha ChallPhyllis RootMarsha QualeyClaire Rudolf MurhpyAnne UrsuJackie Briggs MartinLaura RubySwati AvasthiJane Resh ThomasKelly EastonEmily Jenkins (e. lockhart)Megan Atwood From the Archives: Special guest In July 2012, Chris Crutcher was one of our special guests, along with David Small and Anita Silvey. Watch Chris Crutcher's commencement address: Visit the Residency Archives for full list of guests from previous residencies.