The Canadian association dedicated to people whose careers have been in libraries, archives, publishing, and information work

User Tools

Site Tools


Irma McDonough Milnes

b. Nov. 19, 1924, Sault Ste. Marie, ON; d. Oct. 17, 2010, Sudbury, ON


1946 BA (University of Toronto)
1966 BLS (University of Toronto)


1949-1966 Librarian, Toronto Public Library
1966-1983 Coordinator, Children's Library Service, Ontario Provincial Library Service
1965-1975 Editor, Ontario Library Review
1967-1982 Editor, In Review: Canadian Books for Young People
1978, 1980 Editor, Canadian books for young people / Livres canadiens pour la jeunesse


McDonough, Irma. 1967. “Away with the mediocre!” Quill and Quire, 33 (October): 24-25.

McDonough, Irma. 1971. Profiles from In Review. Ottawa: Canadian Library Association, 1971. [revised and enlarged in 1976].

McDonough, Irma, ed. 1972. Science seminar for librarians working with children. Don Mills, Ont.: Ontario Science Centre.

McDonough, Irma, ed. 1976. Canadian books for children / Livres canadiens pour enfants. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. [Revised in 1980].

McDonough, Irma, ed. 1982. Profiles 2: authors and illustrators, children's literature in Canada. Ottawa: Canadian Library Association.

Milnes, Irma McDonough (1986). Treasures: Canadian children’s book illustration. Toronto: Children’s Book Centre.

Milnes, Irma McDonough et al. (1990). Lands of pleasure: essays on Lillian H. Smith and the development of children’s libraries. Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press. [Irma was a contributor]

Milnes, Irma McDonough (1994). Kaarina and the sugarbag vest. Toronto: Annick Press.

Milnes, Irma McDonough (1997). “Tove Jansson.“ Bookbird, 35, 4:55-59.


President, Ontario Library Association, 1970-1973
Chair of the Board, Canadian Children’s Book Centre, 1975-1980
Book and Periodical Development Council, representative of Canadian Library Association
Bologna Children’s Book Fair, member of Canadian Booth, 1982
Member, Ex Libris Association
Member, International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY)


1981, Irma McDonough Milnes was the first winner of the Claude Aubry Award, given by IBBY Canada for distinguished service within the field of children's literature.


Irma was “a life-long advocate for intellectual freedom, and Canadian children’s literature. A rich cultural and political childhood growing up in a northern Finnish community spawned Irma’s ambitions and vigorous working life in Toronto as librarian, editor, author [and] consultant for Canadian children’s literature.”

“In 1967, as a Centennial project, [Irma] began In Review, a journal for Canadian children’s books [and] in 1976, [she] spearheaded a project that lead to the establishment of the Canadian Children’s Book Centre”.

“Her work allowed travel to many towns in Ontario, Italy, Germany, Cuba and then to Finland for editorial work at the World Peace Council.”

“Irma’s love of Canadian children’s literature was reflected in her personal life as well as her professional career.”


“Irma McDonough Milnes (1924-)” In Something about the author, v. 101 (Detroit: Gale, 1999): 132-134.
Irma Kaarina Milnes obituary. Accessed March 31, 2016.
IBBY Canada Claude Aubry Award 1981 Irma McDonough Milnes. Accessed March 31, 2016.
Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Irma McDonough Milnes (1924-2010). Accessed March 31, 2016.

biographies/irma-mcdonough-milnes.txt · Last modified: 2023/11/23 18:43