About Our Staff

Sarah Sahagian is the CCBC’s Executive Director. She has devoted her career to empowering young people through the written and spoken word. An experienced not-for-profit executive director, Sarah spent five years at the helm of the Speech and Debate Canada Foundation. In her spare time, she is a writer and podcaster whose book reviews, opinion pieces and podcasts have appeared in such outlets as The Washington Post, Toronto Star, National Post, and Frequency Podcast Network. She is also a published young adult author. Sarah lives in Toronto with her husband and daughter.

Meghan Howe is the CCBC’s Library Coordinator and is a bit of a “Jane of all Trades” at the CCBC: in the 19 years she’s worked for the CCBC she’s done parts of every position here. Meghan went to the University of Toronto and has a BSc (Honours) in Biology and Sociology. She joined the CCBC team in 2003 after graduating and has been here ever since! Meghan handles our collections, awards, the TD Grade One Book Giveaway Program and Best Books for Kids & Teens. She loves baking, cross stitching and spending summers at her cottage. Her favourite book for kids is Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress.

Carol-Ann Hoyte is the CCBC’s Program & Events Coordinator, as well as an avid papercrafter, children’s poet, school librarian, and mother to an eight-and-a half-year-old son. For 16 years, she acted as the Quebec Regional Coordinator for Canadian Children’s Book Week before joining the CCBC as our Program and Events Coordinator. Since 2015, Carol-Ann has served on the board of Geordie Theatre which produces theatre for young audiences. When she is not busy with her projects and her boy, Carol-Ann dreams of musicals, New York City, England, and travelling someday soon.

Tara Mandarano is the CCBC’s Marketing and Communcations Coordinator. Tara brings several years of experience as a marketer and product manager in the book publishing industry. She also has extensive experience editing manuscripts and managing online content. She holds a Bachelor in Journalism from Ryerson/Toronto Metropolitan University. In her spare time, she writes poetry and creative nonfiction, and her work has appeared The Washington Post, Today’s Parent, Canadian Living and Chatelaine. Tara lives north of Toronto and is the mother of one young reader and three cute-but-demanding cats. Her favourite book for kids is Willow’s Whispers.

Shannon Barnes is the the editor of Canadian Children’s Book News. Shannon joined the Book Centre team 20 years ago as an intern. She graduated from the University of Toronto with a BA (Honours) in English and Psychology and received a certificate in Book and Magazine Publishing from Centennial College. She’s the person who makes our events happen, from TD Canadian Children’s Book Week to our Awards night. She has worked with over 200 Canadian children’s book authors and illustrators, and has assisted in the coordination of over 400 national Canadian Children’s Book Week tours. Shannon is the mother of two young readers: Molly (age 8) and Nathan (age 11).