Lee Wardlaw Bio Picture
Lee Wardlaw
Children’s Book Author,
Teacher, Cat-Wrangler

Lee Wardlaw claims that her first spoken word was ‘kitty.’ Since then, she’s shared her life with 30 cats (not all at the same time!), and published 30 books for young readers, including board books, picture books, easy-readers, chapter books, middle grade/YA fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and short stories. Her books have sold more than one million copies world-wide, receiving awards and honors from the American Library Association, the International Literacy Association, the Children’s Book Council, National Council of Teachers of English, the Association for Library Service to Children, Bank Street College of Education’s Children’s Book Committee, the Cooperative Children’s Book Center, and more.

Lee’s newest books include: Won Ton – A Cat Tale Told in Haiku (Holt Books for Young Readers, illustrated by Eugene Yelchin), winner of the Lee Bennett Hopkins Children’s Poetry Award and the Myra Cohn Livingston Poetry Award (among others); and Won Ton’s companion title Won Ton and Chopstick, an NCTE Notable Poetry Book and recipient of the BookSource “Scout” Award for Poetry.

Lee has a B.A. in Elementary Education from Cal Poly, SLO, an A.M.I. Primary Diploma (ages 3-6) from the Montessori Institute of San Diego, and studied for her M.Ed. in Child Development at Loyola University, Maryland. She was the Director and Head Teacher of a preschool for two years, and taught elementary grades for three years, prior to writing full-time. Lee still enjoys teaching, and has 40+ years experience giving presentations – both onsite and virtual – for students, teachers, parents, librarians, and writers.

Lee has been an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators since 1980, most recently serving as a mentor for California’s Central- Coastal region. She is also a member of the Authors Guild, the National Association for the Education of Young Children, the Children’s Literature Council of Southern California, California Reading Association, North American Montessori Teachers’ Association, Association Montessori Internationale and, yes, even the Cat Writers’ Association!

Lee lives in Santa Barbara, CA. She and her husband have one grown son (a voracious reader) and one dog-disdaining cat.

For more information about Lee and her books, or to schedule a school, library, conference, Skype, or bookstore appearance, please contact her at: