Carl Sandburg Literary Awards Dinner

When Marcy Carlin was a child, her parents instilled in her a love of books. “To me, reading is a great form of entertainment as well as education,” she says. “Books can offer an escape and inspire creativity. If you teach children to enjoy reading you can give them curiosity to last a lifetime.”

Asked who her favorite authors were as a child, Ms. Carlin shares, “I loved the Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing series by Judy Blume…very entertaining and easy to relate to.” Today, Ms. Carlin shares her loves of books with her two daughters, not only reading Ms. Blume’s books but also Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. She adds, “Now that I have children I see how important reading is to their growth and development.”

Working as a senior vice president and equity analyst at Essex Investment Management for the past 12 years enables Ms. Carlin to serve on several charitable boards. Currently, she serves on the board of the Chicago Public Library Foundation. Now entering her third year on the board, Ms. Carlin is co-chairing the Carl Sandburg Literary Awards Dinner with Chicago Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts.

The dinner raises $1.5 million every year for the Chicago Public Library’s reading programs. Proceeds support innovative Foundation-sponsored Chicago Public Library outreach programs, including the Summer Learning Challenge; One Book, One Chicago; Teacher in the Library and CyberNavigators.

Asked what her favorite reading programs sponsored by the Chicago Public Library Foundation, Ms. Carlin shares, “The summer reading program is a great way to encourage year-round reading. It helps reduce the regression that can occur during summertime.”

Although Ms. Carlin prefers reading an actual book, she reaches for her iPad to read books when traveling and exercising. An avid reader, one of Ms. Carlin’s favorite authors is Jane Austen. She shares, “Ms. Austen’s novels stand the test of time. I greatly admire her ability to describe and romanticize life during that time period. Whenever I reread any of Ms. Austen’s stories, I fall in love with the characters.”

Her favorite Chicago author? “Saul Bellow is the quintessential Chicago author. His wit and gritty observations make his characters, and their daily struggles seem very real.”

The Carl Sandburg Literary Awards Dinner takes place at The Forum, 725 W. Roosevelt Road, on the University of Illinois at Chicago campus, on Wednesday, October 23 at 6PM.

Tickets are still available at Chicago Public Library Foundation.

Dan Rest Photograph.


About Cindy Burns

Currently writing for TCW's 'Woman About Town' column, Cindy Burns covers Chicago's social scene, events, fashion, and interviews women and men who are making a difference in the world. With an M.A. in American History from DePaul University, Ms. Burns is an author, freelance writer, avid reader and researcher. Ms. Burns has spent over 20 years serving on charitable boards and organizations, and currently serves as a member of the Women's Board of the Joffrey Ballet and the Women's Auxiliary Board of the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicago. She is also an Honorary Member of the Children's Service Board of Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital. When Ms. Burns isn't running around Chicago covering current events, you can find her biking, on the tennis courts, or hiking in a mountainous region of her choice.