From an interview 9/08 --http://papertigers.org/interviews/archived_interviews/rtrevino.html

"I had a mother who read to me and took me to the library and I credit her with giving me the gift of loving books and libraries. 

When I was older, I would ride my bike to the bookmobile every two weeks.  I was standing inside a bookmobile the summer I was ten years old, surrounded by so many books and that is when I decided that I wanted to work in that same bookmobile when I grew up.  I wanted to “show off” the books and give others the same joy I felt every time I was surrounded by books.  I am the first in my family to go to college and I have three sisters and a brother who followed in my footsteps and went to college."

Rose Treviño, Leader in Services to Latino Children, Dies at 58

By Debra Lau Whelan -- School Library Journal, 5/3/2010 2:00:00 PM

Rose Zertuche-Treviño, a librarian who devoted her career to helping improve the lives of children, died on April 30 in Houston, TX. She was 58.

Treviño spent her last seven years as the youth services coordinator for the Houston Public Library, a system that serves one of the biggest Spanish-speaking populations in the country. She retired in October 2009 and moved back to San Antonio, where she was born and raised.

Rose Zertuche-Treviño

“How fitting that Rose died on April 30th, El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/ Book Day),” says her friend and colleague Oralia Garza de Cortes, a Latino children's literature consultant. “She loved her work and devoted her life to making sure all children had access to great literature and particularly to programs where children could enjoy and connect to the literature.”

The granddaughter of Mexican immigrants, Treviño grew up poor. Her father worked in a cotton field as a child and went on to hold two jobs to support his family, while his wife worked four jobs. Treviño’s first language was Spanish and only learned to speak English when she entered kindergarten. It was also that year that her mother first took her to a public library—and the five-year-old decided on her career path. “Not everyone figures out what they want to be at such a young age,” says her son Steven Treviño, 33. “And she got to do more than she thought she would ever do.”

The oldest of five children, Treviño helped raise her three sisters and brother, and was the first person in her family to attend college and graduate school, earning an MLS in 1975 from Our Lady of the Lake University, a private catholic university in San Antonio.

Treviño spent her 35-year career being the first of many things. After earning her library degree, she worked in a bookmobile with the San Antonio Public Library's  Las Palmas branch. Later she became the first Hispanic manager of a library in the city of San Antonio when she joined the Memorial Library branch. After that, she became the children’s services coordinator at the Central Library.

One of the highlights of her career was as chair of the 2009 Newbery Award Committee, the first time that a Latino held the position. 

“She presented the Newbery Award to Neil Gaiman in Chicago for The Graveyard Book (HarperCollins, 2008),” says her son, who proudly remembers watching his mother on stage that day. “It was such a great way to cap her career.”

Treviño was the “perfect mother” who started reading to her son and daughter from early on. “When she was pregnant with my sister, I would curl up next to her, and she would read stories to us,” says Steven. “She literally read thousands of books to us. My biggest regret is that we don’t have kids yet because she would have been such a great grandmother.”

Steven and his sister Jaclyn, 27, remember spending many childhood days in the library with their mother attending story time and puppet shows, and Treviño would even bring her young daughter to Texas Library Association (TLA) and American Library Association (ALA) conferences.

“For the first five years of her involvement in ALA, we roomed together during the mid-winter and annual meetings, many times bringing along our daughters or nieces so they could enjoy their vacation and help us scout the exhibit halls for goodies while we attended to our meetings and obligations,” says Garza de Cortes, who Treviño recruited to work at the San Antonio Public Library, where they worked closely together.

Treviño was a passionate advocate for Latino children's literature and library services to Latinos. She wrote Read Me a Rhyme in Spanish and English (2009), a collection of Latino rhymes, songs, finger plays, riddles, and other programming ideas for librarians who work with babies, toddlers, preschoolers, and school-age children. And she edited The Pura Belpré Awards: Celebrating Latino Authors and Illustrators (2006, both ALA Editions).

While at the Houston Public Library, she offered a variety of Latino children’s programs such as Para los niños/For the children, which provided Spanish-speaking parents with resources to help them serve as their children’s “first teachers;” Bilingual Storytime; and Jardín Infantil, a program that was conducted entirely in Spanish and was aimed at newborn children to the age of four.

Treviño also served as chair of the Pura Belpré Award Committee, which seeks to increase of quality Latino literature available to U.S. readers. And she was on the El día de los niños/El día de los librosNational Advisory Committee, a program founded by author and poet, Pat Mora, to help libraries reach out to Latino children and their families.

“Gracious Rose Treviño was a shining example, a librarian committed to the underserved,” says Mora. “She was a friend and a great Día supporter. A warm, quiet person, a woman of faith.”

She was an active member of the ALA, the TLA, the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), the Public Library Association (PLA), and REFORMA, the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking.

In 1997, she was the first the first Mexican American to receive the Siddie Jo Johnson Award for significant contributions for children's librarianship. And most recently, Steven and Jaclyn attended the TLA annual conference in San Antonio to accept an award on their mother's behalf for her contributions to the 2X2 committee, which selects a list of 20 recommended books for children from age two to grade two.

“Mom was not the type to brag about her accomplishments,” says Steven Treviño. “She did what she did because she loved books and children and hoped that all children would have the opportunity she had to learn through reading.”

She is survived by her husband of 35 years, Pete, and their children.

From an Interview 11/08 (?)--http://cynthialeitichsmith.blogspot.com/2008/11/author-librarian-interview-rose-trevio.html

What inspired you to make children's-YA literature your career focus?

I want to share my love of books with children very much like my mom did for me. Children are our future, and those of us who work with children have an opportunity to engage them in so much that the library has to offer. I want every child to have the same opportunity I had.

I am in a position to train and mentor new children's librarians, and I aim to share that passion with them.

What do you love about it?

I love the joy I see in the faces of the children at storytime.

I love the excitement they share when they finally get the book they've been anxious to read.

I love knowing that reading will help improve their listening and learning skills.

I love working with parents and showing them the importance they have in being their child's first teacher.

I love working with new moms and sharing songs, rhymes, and finger plays they can use with their babies, in English and in Spanish.

I love working with new children's librarians and getting them excited and passionate about their work.

I love the literature which I feel is the absolute best.

What are its challenges?

There are a few challenges, which include budget allocations for children's librarians with an MLS. Libraries need children's librarians with an MLS who can provide the best services possible.

Funding to provide ongoing training for those who work with children can also provide a challenge. It is often difficult to reach some communities, especially those whose first language is not English. Not all libraries have staff members who speak languages other than English, and this is sometimes a challenge for immigrants who face many challenges.

" February 11, 2009Before the Newbery, Caldecott, King, and ALA's other prestigious youth media awards were announced at the Midwinter Meeting in Denver, the selection committees crowded into tiny private rooms to call the honorees. This year, AL Focus was invited to capture some of those happy calls and reactions. More ALA videos available at alfocus.ala.org. Transcript at alfocus.ala.org/2009-youth-media-awards-winner-calls-transcript"

Serving Spanish-Language Patrons—A Q&A with Rose Treviño

by Adriana Domínguez -- Críticas, 10/15/2008 -- http://www.criticasmagazine.com/article/CA6605985.html

Rose Treviño is the Youth Services Coordinator for the Houston Public Library, one of the largest library systems in the country that serves one of the biggest Spanish-speaking populations in the country. She is an active member of the American Library Association (ALA), the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), the Texas Library Association (TLA), the Public Library Association (PLA), and REFORMA, the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking. Her work has great impact on library services provided to Latinos on both the local and national level. Currently chairing the Newbery Award Committee, Treviño is also a passionate advocate for Latino children’s literature.

Serving Spanish-Language Patrons—A Q&A With…
This is the second article in an occasional series exploring how public libraries across the country are serving their Spanish-speaking patrons. The first part was “A Q&A With Yolanda Bonitch,” an outreach librarian at New York Public Library.

Your library offers a number of innovative programs and services for Latino youth. Can you tell us about some of them?

Our library is very proud to offer a wide variety of Latino children’s programs. For example, Para los niños/For the children provides Spanish-speaking parents with increased access to resources, strategies, and activities that improve their ability to serve as their children’s “first teachers” from the time they are born, until they turn seven. All handouts for the program are bilingual, and the program is primarily conducted in Spanish.

Bilingual Storytime is conducted at several branches that serve large Spanish-speaking communities. It consists of rhymes, songs, finger plays, games from Latin American countries, and of course books written in Spanish and English. Another is an early literacy program, Jardín Infantil, which is conducted entirely in Spanish and is aimed at children from newborn to age four. There are three components to the program: age appropriate stories, activities that include simple rhymes and songs, and social time with moms and children. We use educational toys for social time.

We also offer cultural programs to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, and a wide array of other activities that include dance, music, arts & crafts, storytelling, and much more.

What are some of the best ways to attract Latino families and their children to the library? 

We have found that word of mouth works really well, as it has helped to increase participation in the Jardín Infantil and Para los niños programs. Programs that include the whole family and take place during a time when parents are not working have the largest participation. Bringing community leaders to the table at the very beginning also helps, as many of these leaders see the people we want to reach at their facilities. Another really good partner to bring on board is the Spanish-language media. With TV and radio helping promote your services in Spanish, you are certain to reach your audience.

A concern that many librarians have when trying to service Latinos is that some may not be familiar with public libraries and how they work. Has this presented a challenge for you? If so, how has the library overcome this challenge?

One of the stumbling blocks is that although libraries are free in the United States, this is not the case in some countries, including many in Latin America. Not having been brought up with a library experience themselves, it is sometimes difficult for parents to pass on the importance of libraries to their children. Thus, getting across the importance of libraries to the Latino communities can pose a challenge. Community partners are a terrific way to reach out. We usually set up library booths at back-to-school events, partner with Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) to reach out to moms, and attend parents’ sessions scheduled by Head Start. At these events, we help new patrons to fill out their library cards, locate their closest library, find out about programs that are available for them and their children, and tell them about materials that can be loaned for free.

Do you feel that working closely with local organizations is useful to attract patrons to the library? Is this an approach you’d recommend to others?

This definitely works. We have a program with WIC in which the moms come to the library, read to their children, and then they bring their reading list to the desk for the librarian to sign. This is one of the requirements that the WIC clinics in Houston have to help parents understand that a healthy mind is as important as a healthy body.

You have served on the El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/ Book Day) National Advisory Committee. Now on its 12th year, Día, as it’s commonly called, has helped many libraries reach out to Latino children and their families. Tell us about the celebration and how it helps libraries reach out to patrons.

Día was founded by award-winning author and poet, Pat Mora and is now sponsored by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) and REFORMA. This has been an excellent program to get Latino families involved in using their library. The celebration is all about children and books and the connection that is made when you bring them together. Pat coined the term “bookjoy” to describe this phenomenon. With Día, the possibilities are endless, and the Texas Library Association has developed a toolkit for library staff, filled with ideas on how to celebrate Día, from first steps, to big annual celebrations.

You have also served as Chair of the Pura Belpré Award Committee. The previously bi-annual award has gone annual this year. Is this due to an increase of quality Latino literature available to U.S. readers? 

The Pura Belpré award has given value to books written and illustrated by Latinos. What may have been previously perceived as a closed door to some, has brought new opportunities for those seeking publication. ALSC and REFORMA sponsor the award and I believe they are sending a message to publishers, book sellers, librarians, and educators, and that message is, that this is a prestigious award, and that it should be given annually, just as the other children’s books awards are given on an annual basis.

How do you feel U.S. Latino literature offerings have changed over the past 12 years since the award was created? Do you think the award has helped to prompt that change?

There are definitely more books written and/or illustrated by Latinos being published now. The first committee that selected the 1996 winners had to look at books published over a six-year period to find the award winners and honorees for that year. This was due to a lack of children’s books written and/or illustrated by Latinos. The award has helped to change that.

You edited The Pura Belpré Awards: Celebrating Latino Authors and Illustrators (ALA Editions, 2006). What motivated you to create this wonderful resource for libraries and educators?

This was actually an invitation made to me by the staff at ALSC. I was immediately excited about the possibility, and knew that with the right team in place, the book could certainly be written. The book would not have been what it is without the help of Oralia Garza de Cortés, Sandra Balderrama, Ana-Elba Pavón, and Jean Hatfield. Having Oralia and Sandra on the team provided us with the award’s vision, background, and history. Ana and Jean brought their experience of working on the award committee and the promotional efforts they put together in their communities.

You have served on the Texas Bluebonnet Award Committee. In 2007, Joe Hayes’s Ghost Fever/Mal de fantasma (Cinco Puntos, 2004) made history by becoming the first bilingual book to win the award. This seems to indicate an increased interest in books in that format. What are your thoughts on bilingual books? 

Bilingual books are an important contribution, especially for those who are working with children who are learning in English at school. Some parents may speak and read Spanish better than English. Having a story in Spanish and English is a welcomed option for them. The same could be said about parents trying to learn Spanish or helping their children to learn Spanish. Some books work better than others in bilingual format.

Technology and the Internet have changed the way libraries serve their patrons and promote their programs. How has technology affected the way you approach and create children’s programs? 

The Houston Public Library is now able to serve customers online. We offer homework help in Spanish and English 24 hours a day, seven days a week for patrons from Kindergarten, all the way through adult learners, and patrons can access this free service with a library card.

With the help of Spanish-speaking staff, our library is able to reach the Spanish-speaking via pod casts. HPLalso offers computer classes in Spanish for children and adults. All program information is now available online and customers can search them by library location.

What role should public libraries serve in the lives of Latino children and their families?

Libraries are in a position to make change happen by supporting and sponsoring initiatives that reach out to Latinos families. Efforts to introduce new programs, new materials, and new initiatives will work as the framework for all future endeavors to serve a community that has not always received the same benefits.

Every child, regardless of first language, color, or ethnicity, deserves the best services possible, and every opportunity to be successful in school. Libraries can provide rich resources to assist parents as they take on the role of first teachers to their children. It is a message that every librarian who works with children should get across to parents. Children are our future, and we should all invest in them.

Please Feel Feel to Share Your Memories of Rose:

Oralia Garza de Cortes

Friend and Colleague


Rose made enormous inroads in children's librarianship: In Texas she was the first Mexican American to ever
receive the Siddie Jo Johnson Award for significant contributions for children's librarianship. In ALA she was the first Latina to ever chair the Newbery Award. She also chaired the Pura Belpre Award, and served on the Dia National Advisory Committee, wrote TLA Summer Reading program manuals, books, established Born to Read programs and manuals and many many other contributions and accomplishments. Gracias, Rose. Con mucho carino, Oralia Garza de Cortes

Jeanette Larson

I worked with Rose on many projects over about 25 years ranging from the Texas Reading Club manuals to the Dia de los Ninos/Dia de los Libros Toolkit for TLA. I remember hearing her talk about how supportive her parents were of her education but also how little they understood of what she was going through because they had not themselves attended college. Rose was an inspiration to many people and will be missed.

Mary Donley

Bilingual Librarian


Last time I saw Rose was @ TLA 2007 in San Antonio. She was introducing Yuyi Morales and many other wonderful latino/a young adult authors.

She will be missed in so many ways!

Lucia Gonzalez



Rose was a very special person. She modeled the way as mentor and leader. I admired her quiet yet determined way. Yes, we will all miss Rose very much.

Ruth I. Gordon

"Big Grandma"

Retired -- "sorta"

Rose had a lively humor even for
--or especially for--serious matters. Her delight in being elected chair
of Newbery bubbled--as did her happiness in her family.
She leaves an empty place in the present--but a very full one in the past

Linda Chavez Doyle

Past-President 2003/2004


I remember Rose coming to the rescue to fill-in as a speaker on a PLA Panel that I moderated back in 2004. She was inspirational and eloquent. Her passion for library services was contagious.
Such a loss for us but what a legacy she leaves.

Patty Wong

County Librarian

Yolo County Library

Rose was a great mentor to me, fostering a love of the good work and the literature associated with the Pura Belpre Award and Dia de los Ninos. She was a good friend and always had a kind word, a fierce oprtimism and an exceptional sense of humor. Her commitment to children and youth and their families knew no bounds. And she fostered that sense in her colleagues. She cared for and mentored many of us and I hope we will remember that and pass it on to others.

Christine McNew

Youth Services Consultant

Texas State Library and Archives Commission

I am so saddened by the loss of Rose. It was my pleasure and honor to travel with her to workshops, conferences, and trainings. I will always remember the laughter, shopping, sight-seeing, three fun-filled days and nights at Disneyland after ALA 2009 in Anaheim, and so much more. My fondness and respect for Rose grew each time we were together. I treasure the memories of heartfelt talks about life and family and work, and all that I learned from Rose. She was a mentor to me also. Rose’s earthly work is done, and a great work it is. A scholarship in her memory is a most fitting way to honor her. Her legacy is in her family, the librarians she educated and i...

Julie Corsaro


I got to know Rose when she was chair of the 2009 Newbery Award Committee. She had a gentle, humble exterior that belied an unyielding committeement to quality library services for all children. I learned more about the origins of this dedication when Rose told me about how she and her four siblings put on their Sunday best every other week and rode the bus to the San Antonio Public library with "mama," who helped each child pick out a book and read to them individually every night, a time Rose remembered as being very special. But Rose wasn't just serious--I think of her with  a big smile on her face and laughing. I will miss her.

Ellen Fader

Youth Services Coordinator

Multnomah County Library

I was honored to serve with Rose on the Board of Directors of the Association for Library Service to Children. Her quiet strength and impeccable understanding of personal politics guided me through several minefields. I am sad knowing Rose is no longer with us.

Betsy Diamant-Cohen

Children's Programming Consultant

Mother Goose on the Loose, LLC

Rose introduced herself to me at a TLA conference where I was presenting. Her enthusiasm for early literacy programming for children never wavered. She was always gracious and supportive. At an ALSC conference, she asked if I would speak with some of her students who were attending the conference to expand their exposure to the wide variety of programs for introducing young children to books, I was honored to help. Rose's passion for making Spanish language programs available in public libraries ignited my enthusiasm for this, as well. I am grateful for her encouragement and for her recent book with ALA Editions about Spanish language programming for children.

Nell Coburn

Raising a Reader Coordinator

Multnomah County Library

I got to know Rose a bit, after admiring her for years, during the time that she chaired Newbery and I chaired Caldecott. I will always remember a quiet dinner we had together the night before our first real committee meetings, where we shared our small fears as well as our hopes for the challenges awaiting us. And then seeing her at the awards banquet, surrounded by a committee that truly loved her, as well as so many of her family members! She really glowed that night. She was a lovely person who was passionate about connecting children and books.

Toni Bissessar


Arlington County Detention Facility

Rose was a shining star and I will miss her light very much.

Gratia Banta

Coodinator of Youth Services

Lane Libraries

I met Rose at a meeting in Miami, FL as a part of Mary Somerville's ALSC task group for work with Children, way back when. I was raising Cuban/Italian step-children. I was delighted to learn from Rose, how the library could welcome Latinos. As a result publishers began to publish for Latinos and I felt I could more appropriately share with my children. I learned something every time our paths crossed. Mostly I was reminded that passion matters! Gracias!

Ana-Elba Pavon

Children's Librarian

Oakland Public Library

Rose was my chair on the Pura Belpre Award Committee. I knew I was going to learn a lot but did not expect to learn so much from Rose in terms of leadership and mentorship. In her quiet style, she managed to keep calm throughout the process and keep everything in order. Later, I had an opportunity to work with her on the book Pura Belpre Awards where she served as contributor and editor. She was a pleasure to work with and you could always count on her for warmth and a smile. She will truly be missed.

Janice Greenberg

Senior Librarian,

Jersey City Free Public Library

Rose was an inspiration and mentor to me and so many others who work with children in libraries..I will miss her greatly as I know many others will.

Our Memories of Rose

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