Jane Addams Peace Association News

Judith Joseph

It is with broken hearts and hope for the future that JAPA announces the opening of the Judith Joseph Living Fund. Judith’s love of books, children, literacy, peace and all things good, made this decision easy for us. We hope to honor Judith’s life by using donated funds to bring delight to the world’s children through our award winning books for decades to come.

Please share this information with all who were touched by this special woman we were fortunate enough to call her sister.

Ruth Chalmers

Ruth Chalmers
Photo credit: Leah Fasten
Smith Alumnae Quarterly Fall 2009

Ruth Chalmers
Executive Director JAPA
Board member JAPA

The Jane Addams Peace Association has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of shared memories we’ve received since the notice of Ruth’s passing was posted.

"She was a wonderful guide and model for so many of us, more importantly the hours-the years and the expertise she gave toward the work of JAPA is a contribution toward a world at peace that no one can calculate"

"To honor Ruth, the ‘heart of JAPA’; The heart’s beat keeps the body alive"

"The words that come to mind when I think of Ruth ~common sense, integrity, flexibility, generosity, wisdom a love of learning and the ability to the humorous side of almost everything"

"Our modest contribution is meant to emphasize the fact that whatever Ruth has ever done it has carried twice the weight and produced twice the fruit of any other’s endeavors."

"Ruth was such a positive woman, very clear in her mind, frank and honest, warm and had a most surprising and refreshing sense of humour."

"Ruth Chalmers, Presente"

We thank US WILPF’s many past presidents, International WILPF’s past and current Presidents, WILPF members, JAPA board members and presidents for their insightful words of our Ruth. May her memory be for a blessing.

Now for the final installment of our seven part series on the 2013 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Ceremony. Below you will find the introduction given by Sonja Cherry-Paul for Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson.


Jacqueline Woodson uses clear understated language to capture the subtle ways in which cruelty and bullying appear in classrooms, schools, and in the lives of children. Each Kindness is a beautiful and poignant story that shines a light on what happens when children reject, rather than embrace, difference.

Maya is new to the school and when she is brought to her new classroom, Chloe and her friends stare at her. They shun her in class and at recess. They nickname her “Never New” and mock her clothes and shoes that appear old and worn. Whenever Maya attempts to play with them, they say no. And so, at recess Maya stands by the fence or jumps rope alone. Soon Chloe and her peers notice that Maya’s seat in the classroom is empty and after several days, they discover that Maya would not be returning to class. Chloe’s shame is palpable to readers. “That afternoon, I walked home alone. When I reached the pond, my throat filled with all the things I wished I would have said to Maya. Each kindness I had never shown.” Embedded in this emotional story are the missed opportunities to form friendships and the lasting effects of regret when indifference is chosen over kindness.


The serene elegance and beauty of the text and paintings in Each Kindness is juxtaposed with an intense message: Our actions matter and kindness makes a difference in the world. This message resonates long after Ms. Albert says, “This is what kindness does. Each little thing we do goes out, like a ripple, into the world;” long after Chloe watches “the water ripple as the sun set through the maples and the chance of a kindness with Maya became more and more forever gone;” long after readers turn the final page of this book.

It is my great pleasure to present the winner of the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award in the category of Books for Younger Children to Jacqueline Woodson for Each Kindness, illustrated by E.B. Lewis and published by Nancy Paulsen Books a division of Penguin Books Young Readers Group.

Now for the sixth installment of our seven part series on the 2013 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Ceremony. Below you will find the introduction given by Lani Gerson for We’ve Got a Job: The 1963 Birmingham Children’s March by Cynthia Levinson.


Adults are always telling young people that they can grow up to make a difference; that they should prepare themselves for an uncertain future by getting smarter, more skilled and better prepared to become accomplished agents for change. Cynthia Levinson has written a wonderful book that tells the stories of how young people in Birmingham, Alabama during the crucial months of 1963 become their own heroes right then and there.

While adults in the civil rights movement struggled to find the way forward in their efforts to bring about freedom and integration in Birmingham, young people, children really, stepped into the worrisome void and made history.

In this time of many significant anniversaries, the complex and inspiring actions of Birmingham’s black youngsters, culminating in the Children’s March, marks its 50th, and today we honor that history, the history makers and the history writers of that time period.


You know a book of history is successful when people like Audrey, Wash, James and Arnetta, the guides chosen to tell this story, breathe. You know a book of history is worthy of the events it describes when they come alive again and remain relevant for today. You know you have a winner of a book when tears flow from the eyes of the reader.

Thank you, Cynthia Levinson, for writing such a fine book, We’ve Got A Job: The 1963 Birmingham Children’s March, published by Peachtree Publishers in Atlanta. Ms. Levinson, you are a thorough researcher, a compelling writer, and, I dare say, an empathetic interviewer. It is my honor and pleasure to introduce you as the winning author of this year’s Jane Addams Children’s Book Award for older children.

Now for the fifth installment of our seven part series on the 2013 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Ceremony. Below you will find the introduction given by Tracy Randolph for Marching to the Mountaintop by Ann Bausum.


Marching to the Mountaintop by Ann Bausum thoroughly explains the relationship between the Sanitation Workers Strike of 1968 in Memphis and Dr. Martin Luther King’s Poor People’s Campaign. Her impressive narrative is enhanced with dozens of striking photographs from these two events and chronicles Dr. King’s final push for justice and equality for all people.

Tracy Randolph, Jane Addams Book Awards Committee Member
Middle School Sponsor

Seventh grade Humanities teacher

English teacher

Kindness rocks

© 2014 Jane Addams Peace Association