Teen Book Festival Board

The Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival, Inc. is a nonprofit Type B corporation.  The organization is governed by a Board of Directors of seven community members who serve in a volunteer capacity for a three-year term. The directors receive no compensation for their service.  

The primary purpose of the Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival, Inc. is to support and provide funds for the benefit of the annual Teen Book Festival. The Board of Directors oversees the Festival’s finances and the operation of TBF. The corporation’s Certificate of Incorporation was filed by the Department of State of New York on August 24, 2010. The corporation has no members.

The group’s mission is to foster a community effort to celebrate and promote reading by connecting teens and authors. Offering teen readers the chance to meet their favorite authors and listen to the writers’ personal experiences, the “back stories” of writing and publishing their books, makes our job incredibly gratifying. Hearing the applause and cheering as the fans express their excitement to see their “rock star” authors each year is the best reward, ever!

If you have an interest in becoming a member of the Board of Directors, please send an e-mail to board@teenbookfest.org

Dr. Laura Jones

Dr. Laura Jones

Laura Jones is a full professor in the School of Education at Nazareth College.  Laura teaches a variety of courses on language and literacy acquisition across the content areas and grade levels and inclusive education.  In 2018, she became the Director of the Frontier Center for Urban Education in the School of Education. Her research interests include elementary and adolescent literacy development, diversity, equity and inclusion in literacy education, and teacher leadership.   One of her proudest accomplishments at Nazareth College has been to serve as the site coordinator for the Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival. When Laura is not engaged in her professional work with teachers and students, she is most likely to be found dancing with her husband or going for walks with her dog.

Beth Puckett

Vice President
Beth Puckett

After finally admitting to herself that she belonged in libraries, Beth Puckett pursued her master’s degree in library science in 2002-2003.  The library seed was first planted as a teenager when she landed her first job as a page at the Fairport Public Library. Originally, Beth received a M.S. in Education, but after serving a few years as a trustee for the Fairport Public Library, she realized her true passion and became a High School Librarian in 2003.  Through her service to the Fairport Public Library and her dedication to teens, she met Stephanie Squicciarini and became a founding member of The Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival. Beth currently works as a Library Media Specialist at Johanna Perrin Middle School in Fairport. While teens & libraries are her daily passion, Beth is equally passionate about spending time with her husband, 3 grown kids and their significant others.

Carly Alicea

No photo available for Carly Alicea

Carly Alicea is an assistant professor in the School of Health & Human Services at Nazareth College. She is an avid reader of young adult literature and a lover of libraries. She has been involved with the Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival since she volunteered as a teen at the the first annual Festival. In addition to her service on the Board of the Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival, she serves on the Planning Committee for the Annual Festival and is former teen blogger for the Festival. She also volunteers with Big Brothers Big Sisters and Girls on the Run. In her spare time, Carly loves crafting, traveling with her husband, and tending to the Little Free Library that she built in her front yard.

Karen Hultz

Karen Hultz

Karen Hultz has been Treasurer for The Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival since its inception in 2005.  In August 2015, Karen retired with 33 years of experience in public libraries. Most of that time was spent at the Irondequoit Public Library as a Teen Services Librarian, later adding the duties of Branch Manager and Assistant Director.  Throughout her career, Karen was active in the Youth Services Section (YSS) of the New York Library Association, serving as YSS President in 2000. Karen currently serves on the Board of Historic Pittsford and volunteers at the nonprofit gift store, One World Goods.  Her hobbies include gardening, quilting, cross-stitch, and reading.

Betsy Gilbert

No photo available for Betsy Gilbert

Betsy Gilbert is the director of the Fairport Public Library, a position she has held since 2000.   She had the good sense to hire Stephanie Squicciarini as Teen Services Librarian shortly after becoming director.  Before working at the Fairport Library, Betsy held a variety of jobs at a variety of libraries including the Rochester Regional Library Council, the Rochester Public Library, the Northeast Texas Library System, and others adding up to 40 years of experience as a librarian.  She also serves on the boards of Tiger Bark Press and the Fairport Library Foundation. She volunteered at the very first Teen Book Festival, directing traffic.

Julie Long

No photo available for Julie Long

Julie Long is the chief public relations officer at Nazareth College, where she's worked since 2001. She works with the college's community to tell its many stories, and is the liaison with the media.  Long has a decade of experience working in journalism as a TV news producer at News 10 NBC in Rochester, N.Y. She has promoted the Teen Book Festival since its been at Nazareth College, and is honored to be on the TBF Board of Directors.

Dr. Kenya Malcolm

No photo available for Dr. Kenya Malcolm

Kenya is a clinical psychologist at The University of Rochester Medical Center. Kenya has served on a number of committees/ boards related to youth, families, emotional wellness, and literacy. She is an active member of the Friends of the Ogden Farmers’ Library in Spencerport and maintains their Facebook page. An avid reader, she maintains an often neglected book-blogger presence on social media (@ReviewsMayVary). Kenya is always ready to discuss the value of diverse stories on building a better world through improving connection, empathy, and critical thinking. Her favorite stories have villains who find redemptions, families that grow together, and princesses that save themselves.

Courtney O'Gorman

No photo available for Courtney O'Gorman

Courtney is a public relations assistant at Dixon Schwabl, a full-service integrated marketing and advertising agency in Rochester where she works with clients in not-for-profit and consumer markets to execute strategic public relations initiatives and tactics. Courtney graduated Summa Cum Laude from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Geneseo, where she studied Communication and English Literature. While at Geneseo, she had the chance to explore the publishing side of the literary industry, working with her peers to create the student-led literary Magazine Gandy Dancer, which publishes fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and visual art from writers and artists throughout the SUNY system. She has always had a love of reading from a young age and is honored to be able to help TBF promote reading and literacy by connecting teens and authors.

Stephanie A. Squicciarini

Founder and Past President
Stephanie A. Squicciarini

Stephanie Squicciarini was the visionary creator and coordinator of the Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival (TBF). Thanks to Stephanie’s leadership and hands-on direction, TBF is today recognized as one of the most respected and celebrated festivals of its kind in the country.  Stephanie Squicciarini received her MLS in 2000 and served as the Teen Services Librarian at the Fairport Public Library until her untimely death in March, 2018. In 2008, Library Journal named her a “Mover and Shaker” for her work as Founder and Director of The Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival.  Stephanie served on boards of the Youth Services Section of the New York Library Association and the Young Adult Library Services Association of the American Library Association.  She also gave of her time and talent to her home community on the Board of Trustees of the Irondequoit Public Library. Stephanie epitomized the spirit of a visionary leader who made a real and lasting difference in the lives of young people by inspiring reading, writing, volunteering and community leadership.