Susan Knell, a longtime faculty member in the College of Education who has gained an international reputation in children’s literature, has been appointed to the prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Award Committee.

The Hans Christian Andersen Award is the highest international distinction given to authors and illustrators of children’s books and recognizes lifelong achievement.

The committee on which Knell now serves will nominate U.S. authors and illustrators and choose books for the biennial IBBY Honor List.

“It’s the biggest thing I’ve ever served on,” Knell said. “I’m excited to dive in in a scholarly way and look at what these folks have done.”

Knell joined the faculty at PSU in 1996. She teaches early childhood classes in children’s literature and the online graduate program for a reading specialist degree, and has coordinated the PSU Young Authors Conference for many years.

Alice Sagehorn, chair of Teaching & Leadership, said she and the entire department were proud of Knell’s appointment.

“This is a great honor and a testimony to her scholarship in children’s literature and international folk tales,” Sagehorn said.