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Lady Cutler Award 2020

Libby Hathorn announced as the 2020 recipient of the LADY CUTLER AWARD.

Libby will be presented with her award at out Aspire & Celebrate! event

Date: Saturday November 21, 2020 Time: 2.00 for 2.30 – 4.00pm

Rydges World Square, Sydney Book here

Picture of Libby Hathorn
Libby Hathorn

The Children’s Book Council of Australia NSW Branch is pleased to announce that Libby Hathorn has been chosen as the 2020 recipient of the LADY CUTLER AWARD.

Libby Hathorn is an award-winning author, poet and librettist. She is the author of more than eighty books for children and young people. Many of her books have been translated into several languages and adapted for stage and screen. Throughout her work run themes of positive self-esteem in children, importance of the strength and fragility of family, fun and glory in nature, all threaded through with the power of kindness and empathy in our lives.

Over the decades Libby has generously shared her love of literature with children, teachers, and the community. Through workshops, conferences, festivals and school visits Libby has promoted the importance of story, the valuing of books and libraries all with Australian stories at heart. She has continually sought to raise the standard of literature through both her own work and teaching and mentoring others; from teaching at Sydney University to reaching out to remote communities via video conferencing or in person as an Australia Day Ambassador for over 20 years. Libby has carried the message of the diversity and vibrance of Australian children’s literature far beyond Australia, providing curriculum materials in Africa, Nepal and India.

Libby is devoted to ‘spreading the word’ about poetry. She has developed documentaries on poets in association with the State Library of NSW and is currently working on a World Poetry collection encompassing many international voices as well as new picture storybooks.

Her work has won honours in Australia, United States, Great Britain and Holland including the Alice Award for her body of work, and the Asher Prize alongside Honour and Notable books in the Children’s Book of the Year Awards run by the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA).

The Lady Cutler Award commemorates the contribution to the Children’s Book Council of Australia NSW Branch by its former patron, Lady Helen Cutler, and is presented for Distinguished Service in the field of Australian Children’s Literature.

Libby will receive this award in Sydney at a celebratory event to be held on November 21st, 2020. Plans remain fluid due to COVID 19 restrictions. Please refer to for details closer to the date.

For a complete list of Libby’s books, awards and other details click here.

About the Award

The Lady Cutler Award is a bi-ennial award, administered by the CBCA NSW Branch, for Distinguished Service to Children’s Literature. It commemorates the contribution to the Children’s Book Council NSW Branch by Lady Helen Cutler, its first patron, accepting the appointment in 1966, when her husband Sir Roden Cutler became Governor of New South Wales. Lady Cutler continued as Patron of the CBCA NSW Branch until her death in 1990. Lady Cutler saw her role as one of service to the community. She recognised the needs of children and encouraged CBCA NSW Branch members to advance the cause of children’s literature throughout the state.

While many have made a significant contribution in this area, their work was often unrecognised, so, in 1981 the CBCA NSW Branch, headed by then President, Eddie Coffey inaugurated the Lady Cutler Award, with sponsorship from Hodder & Stoughton. From 2012 the award came full circle with Eddie Coffey taking up the sponsorship in the name of his company, Peribo

The Award consists of:

A framed certificate;A cameo (brooch or pendant) The recipient’s name engraved on the base of the perpetual trophy, a Wedgewood vase, and have the honour of retaining the vase until the succeeding award presentation.

Nominations should be submitted on the Official Nomination form.

Please read the Advice to Nominators & Criteria carefully.

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