Celebrating Ohio Book Awards & Authors Grant

The Celebrating Ohio Book Awards & Authors (COBAA) grant application period has ended. The following in provided for information purposes only.

The Celebrating Ohio Book Awards & Authors (COBAA) is an opportunity for Ohio libraries to apply for grant funds to build or expand a collection of books receiving honors and awards in Ohio and by Ohio authors.  In 2016, the State Library of Ohio announced the availability of LSTA funds to support COBAA. This grant initiative provides funds specifically for collection development purposesconnecting Ohio readers to Ohio authors and Ohio book award winners. This year, in its sixth iteration, the grant award is a maximum of $2,000 per eligible institution.  

Libraries may use the awarded federal funds to purchase titles listed on the COBAA Book list under the Book Awards tab , in any approved format. Please refer to the FAQs tab for specific guidelines on the use of awarded funds.

Application Questions

Using statistics such as employment rates, free lunch program rate of reimbursement, or household income, tell us about your community. (max 250 words)

Identify a group/target audience that will benefit from the purchase of COBAA titles (e.g., book clubs, HS English classes, college Education Majors, 2nd grade Language Arts students). (max 250 words)

How do you expect this group/target audience to benefit and grow from the purchase of COBAA titles? Use specific examples. (max 250 words)

A great way to promote the materials purchased via the COBAA grant is through programming. Is your institution considering any programming plans; if so, would you like to share them with us?

Does your institution belong to the Ohio Digital Library?

Documents Required for Application

Reports Forms

Yes, upon completion of the grant contract period (April 30, 2021), two final reports must be submitted:

What Can You Buy?

Any title listed on the COBAA Book List (PDF or Excel Workbook) from any vendor in any quantity, in the following formats:

  • Print
  • Braille
  • Graphic Novel
  • Foreign Language
  • Large Print
  • Books on Disc
  • Playaway
  • eBooks

**Note: some titles may be out of print**
***If you are purchasing any title(s) above list price, provide an explanation within your responses to the required application questions***

What Can’t You Buy?

  • Student/Teacher Guides
  • Classroom Sets

***Processing/cataloging expenses, unless included in the costs of potential purchases, are not permissible for this grant***

Who Can Apply?

  • Ohio Public Libraries receiving Public Library Funds (PLF)
    • If multiple branches within a public library system apply, each application must identify a specific audience and need; each application must be unique.
  • Ohio School Libraries/Media Centers that are accredited by the State of Ohio
    • If multiple libraries or media centers within a school system apply, then each application must identify a specific audience and need; each application must be unique.
  • Ohio Academic libraries must be part of an accredited institution of higher learning
    • If multiple libraries or campuses centers within an academic institution apply, each application must identify a specific audience and need; each application must be unique.
  • Ohio Special Libraries

Are Matching Funds Required?

No, matching funds are not required for this special LSTA grant program.

Will the online application save my work?

Applications must be completed in ONE SITTING. Before initializing the application process, please review the application questions and obtain the required ready-to-upload documents.

What is the grant timeline?

The COBAA period will run March 1, 2021 – April 30, 2021.

I know my community could benefit from this grant, but where could I find some useful data?

You might check out these sites:

Feeding America

The Annie E. Casey Foundation: Kids Count Data Center

Who Do I Contact for Questions?

Questions should be addressed to LSTA Coordinator, Cindy Boyden, via LSTA@library.ohio.gov, or 614-644-6863.


All proposals were due by midnight, January 15, 2021; COBAA grant terms will run March 1, 2021 – April 30, 2021.

The awarded LSTA federal funds may be used to purchase copies of the selected title(s). You can view the complete list of over 1,000 eligible titles as a PDF or Excel Workbook from the following awards and book lists: 

Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards

The Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards recognize books that have made important contributions to our understanding of racism and human diversity. Cleveland poet and philanthropist Edith Anisfield Wolf established the book awards in 1935, in honor of her father, John Anisfield, and husband, Eugene Wolf, to reflect her family’s passion for social justice. Presented by the Cleveland Foundation, it remains the only American book prize focusing on works that address racism and diversity. Categories include Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, and Lifetime and Landmark.

Buckeye Children’s and Teen Book Awards

The Buckeye Children’s and Teen Book Award program is designed to encourage students in Ohio to read literature critically, to promote teacher and librarian involvement in young adult literature programs, and to commend authors of such literature.

The Buckeyes are one of the only state reader’s choice awards in which students get to nominate the titles as well as vote on the final winners. The only adults who may submit nominations or votes are teachers and librarians who are representing a group of students from their school or library. This allows the Buckeyes to be truly a student-chosen award in all aspects. Categories include K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and teen.

Choose to Read Ohio Booklists

The Choose to Read Ohio (CTRO) Booklists are curated by librarians and educators to promote reading across Ohio. Each booklist highlights 20 notable titles by Ohio authors for a for a two-calendar-year promotion period. Categories include Books for Young children, Tweens, Teens, and Adults. The CTRO booklists are supported by The State Library of Ohio, Ohioana Library Association, and the Ohio Center for the Book.

Dayton Literary Peace Prize

The Dayton Literary Peace Prize, inaugurated in 2006, is the first and only annual U.S. literary award recognizing the power of the written word to promote peace. The Dayton Literary Peace Prize recognizes adult fiction and nonfiction books that have led readers to a better understanding of other cultures, peoples, religions, and political points of view. Categories include the Richard C. Holbrooke Distinguished Achievement Award to recognize lifetime achievement, fiction, and nonfiction.

Floyd’s Pick Book Award

Floyd’s Pick is a book award developed by the Choose to Read Ohio (CTRO) Advisory Council and presented in memory of children’s literature expert, advocate, and librarian Floyd Dickman. It is given annually to a book written by an Ohio author or a book illustrated by an Ohio illustrator that is representative of high-quality literature created for children. This book will be one that Floyd Dickman would have enthusiastically promoted, and is to carry on the legacy of his work to support and share children’s literature in the State of Ohio.

James Cook Book Award

The OLC’s Teen Services Division created the James Cook Book Award: Celebrating Diversity in Teen Literature in 2007. The award was created in memory James Cook, a Teen Specialist at Dayton Metro Library, who was well-known in the library community as an advocate for teens, diversity, and teen literature. The award recognizes a book that promotes and celebrates cultural, ethnic, or social diversity. The winning books feature a teen as one of the main characters; demonstrate excellence in writing; promote cultural, ethnic, or social diversity; and have a wide appeal to a teen audience.

Norman A. Sugarman Children’s Biography Award

The Norman A. Sugarman Children’s Biography Award was established in 1998 to honor excellence in the field of biography for children. The Sugarman Award was established by Joan G. Sugarman in memory of her husband, Norman A. Sugarman, a prominent tax attorney who was born and raised in Cleveland and later served in Washington, D.C. The Sugarman Award is given biennially by Cleveland Public Library and presented to a writer and/or illustrator of a new biography for children’s grades Kindergarten through 8th grade. The Award is presented in April in alternate years in celebration of National Library Week. It is for a work published in the previous two calendar years.

Ohioana Book Awards

The Ohioana Book Awards are the second oldest, and among the most prestigious, state literary prizes in the nation. Nearly every notable Ohio writer of the past 78 years has been honored. The first Ohioana Book Award, presented in 1942, was given in the category of nonfiction to James Reston’s Prelude to Victory. Awards for juvenile literature and fiction were first presented in 1943, followed in 1944 by poetry and “book about Ohio/Ohioan,” and in 2014, middle grade/young adult literature. To these juried awards, a Readers’ Choice Award was added in 2016, allowing readers to choose their favorite book from among the finalists selected by judges.

Thurber Prize for American Humor

Awarded annually, the Thurber Prize for American Humor is one of the highest recognitions of humor writing in the United States. A panel of national judges selects three finalists from eight or nine semi-finalists. Previously held in New York City, the Thurber Prize returned to its hometown roots—Columbus, Ohio—beginning in 2018.

The submission period for this grant has ended.