For nearly three decades, Ceta Ramkhalawansingh provided leadership in the City of Toronto’s equity and diversity office. Toronto City Council appointed her in 2014 as the Ward 20 Councillor to fill a vacancy. In her early student activist life, she organized to set up women’s studies at University of Toronto. Ceta has worked to save and build affordable housing, to protect and value heritage and to fend off inappropriate development. A volunteer on several non-profit boards, Ceta is the National Chair, The Word On The Street Canada; President, Learnxs Foundation and is a member of Friends of Fort York, Toronto Foundation, Innis College Council and Grange Community Association. Her booklist celebrates Toronto, discovers lost history, examines the impact of colonialism and imperialism, and addresses power relations between men and women, rich and poor, white and black. Her selections are based on her identity as an immigrant and a feminist of colour.
Kim Echlin’s books include Under the Visible Life, Elephant Winter, Dagmar's Daughter, Inanna, and The Disappeared, a Giller short-list and winner of the Barnes and Noble award, translated into 17 languages. She won first prize in the CBC Literary Prize for Creative Non-fiction and the Torgi Award. She has been a documentary-maker at the CBC, a fiction editor at The Ottawa Citizen and has taught writing at the University of Toronto’s School for Continuing Studies. She has travelled widely, including Pakistan, Iceland, Europe and Central America. She is currently researching the International Criminal Court in The Hague for a new novel.
Jenny’s Grandma Lowell fostered a love of reading in all of her children and grandchildren and Jenny has had her nose in a book since she first learned how to read. In Grade 6, she was kicked out of class for covertly reading and as a teen, her mother would take her books away as a punishment. Ouch. To this day, she prefers a book to a TV show and a library or a bookstore to a movie theatre. And as a parent, both her kids know that she will always buy them a book if they are in a bookstore!