About Our Staff

quill-pen-paperCurrent Bulletin Reviewers

Deborah Stevenson, Editor (DS)
Deborah Stevenson has been with the Bulletin since 1989 and has held the position of Editor since 2001. She holds a PhD in English from the University of Chicago, where she wrote her dissertation on children’s literature and contemporary culture. She has taught children’s literature at Indiana University Northwest and in the continuing education program at the University of Chicago, and she now teaches as an Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois. Her articles have appeared in the Horn Book Magazine, The Lion and the Unicorn, and the Children’s Literature Association Quarterly, and she is a senior editor of the Oxford Encyclopedia of Children’s Literature. She is also the co-author, with Betsy Hearne, of Choosing Books for Children: A Commonsense Guide.

Quinita Balderson, Reviewer (QB)
Quinita earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. This faithful Illini works on campus at the College of Law as a Journal Assistant for the Law Review and Elder Law Journal while pursuing a master’s in Library and Information Science with a specialization in Youth Services and is enrolled in the K-12 Licensure program. Passion for diversity and dedication to all things kids’ lit makes her a special addition to The Bulletin staff.

Natalie Berglind, Reviewer (NB)
Natalie graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2017, where she majored in English with a German minor. For a semester during her undergrad, she volunteered at the CCB. Every year on Halloween, Natalie hosts an event in her hometown in which she passes out hundreds of books to children in the community. Natalie is passionate about libraries and children’s literature.

Elizabeth Bush, Reviewer (EB)
Betty received a BA degree from Roosevelt University, an MA degree from Governors State University, and an MLS degree from Rosary College (now Dominican University.) She was a librarian within Archdiocese of Chicago for 2 decades.  After reviewing for Booklist she came to the Bulletin, where she has been a reviewer for over twenty years. She taught as an adjunct lecturer in the Youth Services program at the iSchool of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She has served on the Boston Globe-Horn Book, Robert F. Sibert, Gryphon, and Scott O’Dell Awards Committees.

Fiona Hartley-Kroeger, Reviewer (FHK)
Fiona holds an MA in Children’s Literature from Simmons University and is currently a PhD candidate in English Literature at UIUC. Her interests include speculative fiction, fairy tales and folklore, and the history of women’s writing and education. Her research centers on gender in transformative retellings and adaptations. Fiona has a background in children’s bookselling, and her work has been published in Children’s Literature in Education.

Miriam Larson, Reviewer (ML)
Miriam is the executive director of the Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center. She is a former elementary school librarian and an alum of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. In her free time she enjoys playing music, hiking, and volunteering in her community.

Alaine Martaus, Reviewer (AM)
Alaine is a recent graduate of the PhD program at UIUC’s School of Information Sciences, where her research focused on the intersection of literacy engagement, youth digital culture, and fan studies. She has an MLS from Florida State University and an MA in Children’s Literature from Hollins University, where she specialized in the study of young adult fantasy and science fiction. She spent most of her professional librarian career working as a high school librarian and has taught courses in young adult literature and youth librarianship. She spends a lot of her downtime reading, including mysteries, romance, sci-fi, fantasy, and realism, but she still won’t read anything where the dog dies.

Adam McConville, Editorial Assistant (AMM)
Adam graduated from Ohio University with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and is currently studying for his MSLIS at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Kiri Palm, Reviewer (KP)
Kiri is pursuing their MSLIS degree at the iSchool at UIUC. They hold BAs in Theatre and German Studies from Southern Illinois University Carbondale and are a published playwright. Upon completion of their degree, Kiri hopes to work as a children’s public librarian and assist kids in underserved areas and LGBTQ+ youth in particular.

Kate Quealy-Gainer, Assistant Editor (KQG)
Kate received her master’s degree in Information Science from the University of Illinois with a specialization in Youth Services from the University of Illinois. After reviewing for the Bulletin while completing her degree, she joined the staff as Assistant Editor in the summer of 2009. She’s chaired the Gryphon Award committee for several years now, is responsible for the production of our annual Guide Book to Gift Books, and teaches a reviewing class for the iSchool in the summers.