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Author, Professor, and Librarian Dr. Ramona Kerby Honored as Distinguished Alumna

APRIL 30, 2022 — DENTON — Dr. Ramona Anne Nolen Kerby, Class of ‘80 and ‘84, was honored last weekend at the annual Pioneer Alumni Association Awards ceremony in Denton, TX with the Distinguished Alumni Award.

Dr. Kerby, fondly known as “Mona,” is a prolific author and educator. Her 48-year career in education began as a kindergarten teacher at a public school in Arlington. She came to TWU in the late ‘70s, and obtained a master’s degree in Library Science and a Ph.D. in Library Science. “TWU changed my life,” she says. “I learned how to teach and write. I learned how to share books and learning. Because of TWU, I discovered my life’s work.”

After years as both a teacher and librarian in public schools in Texas, Dr. Kerby is now the L. Stanley Bowlsbey Endowed Chair and Professor of Education at McDaniel College in Maryland. There she has cultivated graduates who have achieved success as professors, professional writers, school superintendents, and, of course, librarians — two of whom have been named Maryland School Librarian of the Year.

She has served as a member of numerous professional associations such as the American Association of School Librarians, Association of Library Service to Children, International Association of School Librarians, the Maryland Association of School Librarians, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

From non-fiction books about Frederick Douglass, to YA novels about summer vacation, and even fun, scientific looks at cockroaches, Dr. Kerby has published 15 titles across genres in her long, storied career. Her award-winning books have sold over a quarter million copies internationally and have been positively reviewed by professional selection sources such as Booklist, Horn Book Guide, Kirkus, School Library Journal, and Wilson’s Children’s Core Collection.

In 2020, she added to her numerous distinctions and honors when she received the American Association of School Librarians’ Distinguished Service Award.

“My life and profession are intertwined,” she says. “My high school English teacher, Mrs. Dell Parrent, shared her love of reading with me, and I have done my best to pass this extraordinary gift forward to my students, both at the elementary and graduate level. I hope I’ve passed it on to the readers of my books, students I don’t even know.”

Since 1969 the Pioneer Alumni Association, formerly known as the TWU Alumni Association, has bestowed the Distinguished Alumni Award in recognition of a Texas Woman’s University alumni’s tremendous contribution to their communities and field of study. It is the highest and most prestigious award the Association presents.

Marketing Contact:
Luis G. Rendon
Marketing Chair
Pioneer Alumni Association