Betty Gilderdale has won the 1994 Margaret Mahy lecture award, offered annually by the New Zealand Children’s Book Foundation for a distinguished and significant contribution to children’s literature, publishing or literacy.
Betty Gilderdale is a foundation member of the Children’s Literature Association and was president for five years. She is well-known as a critic, broadcaster and lecturer and is recognised in New Zealand and overseas as an authority on children’s literature.
Her published work includes A Sea Change: 145 Years of New Zealand Junior Fiction, Introducing Margaret Mahy, and Introducing 21 New Zealand Writers. She contributed the children’s literature section of The Oxford History of New Zealand Literature and is currently engaged in contributions to a number of major works, including The Oxford Illustrated History of Children’s Literature and The Routledge Encyclopedia of Commonwealth Literature. She edited the re-publication of early New Zealand children’s books in the Kotare series.
She has recently written The Little Yellow Digger for young children.