This acclaimed picture book autobiography tells the triumphant story of Sharice Davids, one of the first Native American women elected to Congress, and the first LGBTQ congressperson to represent Kansas.
When Sharice Davids was young, she never thought she’d be in Congress. And she never thought she’d be one of the first Native American women in Congress. During her campaign, she heard from a lot of doubters. They said she couldn’t win because of how she looked, who she loved, and where she came from.
But everyone’s path looks different and everyone’s path has obstacles. And this is the remarkable story of Sharice Davids’ path to Congress.
Beautifully illustrated by Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley, an Ojibwe Woodland artist, this powerful autobiographical picture book teaches readers to use their big voice and that everyone deserves to be seen—and heard!
The back matter includes information about the Ho-Chunk written by former Ho-Chunk President Jon Greendeer, an artist note, and an inspiring letter to children from Sharice Davids.
"Rich, vivid illustrations by Ojibwe Woodland artist Pawis-Steckley are delivered in a graphic style that honors Indigenous people. The bold artwork adds impact to the compelling text." (Kirkus starred review)
"The prose is reminiscent of an inspirational speech (“Everyone’s path looks different”), with a message of service that includes fun biographical facts, such as her love of Bruce Lee. Pawis-Steckley (who is Ojibwe Woodland) contributes boldly lined and colored digital illustrations, inflected with Native symbols and bold colors. A hopeful and accessible picture book profile." (Publishers Weekly)
"Affecting picture-book autobiography." (The Horn Book)
- A Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year 2022 - Outstanding Merit in biography and memoir
- On Here Wee Read's 2021 Ultimate List of Diverse Children's Books
- 2022 ALSC Notable Children’s Books in the middle readers category
- 2022 Booklist from Rise: A Feminist Book Project—Early Readers Nonfiction
- Nominee for 2022 Reading the West book award
- Selected as CCBC Choices 2022—biography, autobiography and memoir
About the Author
Sharice Davids was inspired to public service by her single mom, an army drill sergeant. Raised on military bases, Sharice worked her way through Johnson County Community College in Kansas City, before eventually earning a law degree from Cornell Law School. As a first-generation college student who had to work for everything including martial arts lessons, Representative Davids is focused on increasing opportunity by supporting public education and affordable healthcare. Davids was a White House Fellow under President Barack Obama. When she was sworn into the 116th Congress, Representative Davids became one of the first two Native American women to serve in Congress. She is a resident of Roeland Park, Kansas.
Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley is an Ojibwe Woodland artist from Barrie, Ontario, and a member of Wasauksing, First Nation. He is currently an Artist-in-Residence at Skwachay's Lodge in Vancouver, British Columbia, practicing his acrylic painting and illustration techniques. His fine art focuses on promoting and reclaiming Ojibwe stories and teachings, in a modern interpretation of the Woodland tradition. In 2019 Joshua did a Google Doodle of Jingle Dancers which was displayed on the Google search page. Sharice’s Big Voice is Joshua’s second picture book. Visit him online at www.joshuamangeshig.com.
Nancy K. Mays has published short stories in Ploughshares, the Colorado Review, Mid-American Review, and other publications. Nancy is an adjunct professor of journalism at the University of Kansas. She is a resident of Mission Woods, Kansas.
Demonstrates that everyone’s voice matters and needs to be heard. Powerful stuff! — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"The prose is reminiscent of an inspirational speech (“Everyone’s path looks different”), with a message of service that includes fun biographical facts, such as her love of Bruce Lee. Pawis-Steckley (who is Ojibwe Woodland) contributes boldly lined and colored digital illustrations, inflected with Native symbols and bold colors. A hopeful and accessible picture book profile." — Publishers Weekly
"... a welcome addition to picture-book biography shelves." — Booklist
"affecting picture-book autobiography" — The Horn Book