Vale Dr Maurice Saxby (1924-2014)

5 December 2014

Children's literature advocate and friend of the Faculty of Education and Social Work Dr Maurice Saxby AM has died, aged 89.

Dr Saxby was a distinguished alumnus of the faculty and made a huge contribution in his lifetime to literature in Australia.

As a former teacher and librarian, Dr Saxby continued his studies in academia and completed his Master of Education at the University of Sydney before becoming a lecturer in the Bachelor of Education program.

He co-authored the History of Australian Children's Literature with Margaret Trask, a collaborative project which for many years spread knowledge of Australian children's literature to future generations.

Dr Saxby served twice on the Hans Christian Andersen Award Jury of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) and was its first life member.

He was the first national president of the Children's Book Council of Australia (CBCA) and remained associated with the CBCA for more than 60 years.

Dr Saxby received the Children's Book Council National Council Citation in 1990, among other awards such as the Nan Chauncy Award (2002), the Lady Cutler Award (1989), the Dromkeen Medal (1983), and, in 1995, Member in the Order of Australia (AM).

In 2013 he received a Doctor of Letters from the University of Sydney for his unwavering dedication to Australian children's literature and the Pixie O'Harris award for service to children's books at the annual Australian Book Industry Awards.