Personal Philanthropy

Ruth & Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Awards

For over 40 years, the Ruth & Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards have recognized artistic excellence in Canadian children’s literature. 

The Ruth Schwartz Children’s Book Awards were established in 1976 by Sylvia Schwartz to honour the memory of her sister, Ruth, a prominent bookseller in Toronto. The first award was given to Mordecai Richler for Jacob Two-Two Meets the Hooded Fang. In 2004, their family renamed the awards to honour both sisters.

Two awards are presented annually, one for picture books and the other for young adult/middle readers. The winners are nominated by a three person awards committee comprised of a bookseller, a librarian and a children’s book reviewer. The winners are selected by juries of young readers from an Ontario public school. 

The administration of these awards is shared by the Ontario Arts Foundation, the Ontario Arts Council (which manages the jury process), and the Ruth Schwartz Foundation (which funds the awards). 


Prize: $6,000 each for Picture Book and Young Adult / Middle Reader


2022 Recipients

Children's picture book winner
Mii maanda ezhi-gkendmaanh / This Is How I Know
by Brittany Luby (Guelph, Ont.)
illustrations by Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley (Vancouver, B.C.)
Anishinaabemowin translation by Alvin Ted Corbiere and Alan Corbiere
Groundwood Press


Adult Middle Reader winner
by Philippa Dowding (Toronto, Ont.)


Past Recipients


News Releases 
2022 Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards presented to Brittany Luby, Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley and Philippa Dowding June 22, 2022

Shortlist for the 2022 Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards announced  April 26, 2022

BLOG: Light at the end of the tunnel... Read more »