• Laura Bates
    Writer and Everyday Sexism founder

    Laura Bates is the founder of the Everyday Sexism Project, a collection of testimonies of gender inequality. She is the author of several books, including YA novel The Burning, and writes regularly for newspapers including the Guardian and the New York Times. She was awarded a British Empire Medal for services to gender equality in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list 2015.

  • Caroline Carpenter
    YA Book Prize chair

    Caroline is web editor at The Bookseller and chair of the YA Book Prize. She has worked at The Bookseller since 2013, following publishing internships and a stint at The Voice newspaper, during which time she has taken a keen interest in children’s and YA publishing. She has run the social media for the YA Book Prize since it launched and is also the author of Guide to the Hunger Games.

  • Julia Eccleshare
    Hay Festival's children's director

    Julia is an experienced children's book journalist, children's book award chair and the director of Hay Festival's children's programme. Her most recent book is 1001 Children’s Books to Read Before You Grow Up. She won the Eleanor Farjeon Award in 2000 and was appointed MBE in 2014 for services to children’s books.

  • Emma Suffield
    School Librarian of the Year

    Emma has been a school librarian since 2014, having previously worked as a library assistant. She was named the UK School Library Association's School Librarian of the Year in 2018. She loves classics and YA novels, as well as working with young people and creating a reading for pleasure atmosphere within the library. She blogs about libraries and all things books at emmasuffield.wordpress.com.

  • Daphne Lao Tonge
    Founder of Illumicrate and marketing director

    Daphne is the founder and owner of Illumicrate, the UK's first YA book subscription box. She was an award-winning YA book blogger from 2011-2018, and is currently marketing director for inclusive children's' publisher Knights Of and event chair. She's built a wonderful community of YA lovers and can usually be found recommending books on social media.

  • Alex Wheatle
    Award-winning author

    Alex is the author of several books including the modern classic Brixton Rock, and the multi-award-winning Crongton series. He was awarded an MBE for his services to literature in 2008, has been twice nominated for the Carnegie Medal, and has won numerous awards including the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize.