Turning Pages is a collaborative effort featuring twelve local Boise BIPoC leaders, reading and discussing children’s books that hold deep meaning and importance to them.
Each ten-minute episode includes the reader’s introduction of their personal journey, examples of overcoming barriers, celebrating who they are, and how each selected book has enriched, inspired, and encouraged them.
Turning Pages was created to center BIPoC voices and role models, while elevating the importance of reading and literacy. Each episode seeks to engage K-6th grade learners, teachers, and parents in discussion and awareness of the diversity of experience and expertise found in our community.
You can visit the Turning Pages YouTube page here, or watch the videos below:
Turning Pages: Whitney Mestelle reads from The Last Stop on Market Street
From Turning Pages: Whitney Mestelle, a DEI strategist, speaker, social entrepreneur and the Co-Founder & Executive Director of Inclusive Idaho, reads from The Last Stop on Market Street, written by Matt De La Pena and illustrated by Christian Robinson. Inclusive Idaho is focused on building inclusion and belonging for underrepresented, underserved and minoritized Idahoans. In…Watch the video
Turning Pages: Life Ilunga reads from The Day You Begin
From Turning Pages: Life Ilunga, administrative assistant for the vice president of finance at Boise State University and board member of the International Health and Peace Initiative, shares: The Day You Begin, by Jaqueline Woodson, illustrated by Rafael Lopez. Life migrated to Boise from the D.R. of Congo in 2000. She graduated from Boise State…Watch the video
Turning Pages: Sonya Rosario reads from Just Ask! Be Brave, Be Different, Be You
From Turning Pages: Sonya Rosario reads from Just Ask! Be Brave, Be Different, Be You, by Sonia Sotomayor, illustrated by Rafael Lopez. Sonya founded the Women of Color Alliance, a social justice organization for girls and women living in rural Idaho. An award-winning filmmaker, her films give voice to the change makers, and their life-experiences…Watch the video
Turning Pages: David “Eleven” Maxwell reads from Iggie’s House
From Turning Pages: David “Eleven” Maxwell, musician, writer and teacher, reads from Iggie’s House, by Judy Blume. Raised in East San Diego, David grew up playing multiple sports, reading literature, and writing. In college he played basketball and ran track and field. He graduated with a BS in Journalism/Writing and an MA in cross cultural…Watch the video
Turning Pages: Carmen Pemsler Reads From She Persisted Around the World
From Turning Pages: Carmen Pemsler, who is graduating from Boise State University with degrees in civil engineering and math, reads from She Persisted Around the World, by Chelsea Clinton. Originally from Guatemala, Carmen hopes to use her degree and experiences to integrate sustainable design in buildings all over the world.Watch the video
Turning Pages: Leta Harris Neustaeder reads from Hair Love
From Turning Pages: Leta Harris Neustaedter is an arts educator, performer, Licensed Clinical Social Worker and community organizer. She owns Metamorphosis Performing Arts Studio where she maintains a private practice and teaches lessons. She contracts with schools and organizations to create and facilitate arts-based curriculums and is a certified Change Leader through the Idaho Commission…Watch the video
Turning Pages: David Thomas reads from Exceptional Black Men in History
From Turning Pages: Detective Dave Thomas has been with the Boise Police department for the last 19 1/2 years, and his current position is a school resource officer assigned to Timberline HS. He has also been assigned to the motor unit, night step and patrol team. He’s also retired from the United States Air Force,…Watch the video
Turning Pages: Fowzia Adan reads from The Proudest Blue, A Story of Hijab and Family
From Turning Pages: Fowzia Adan recently graduated from Boise State University with a bachelor’s degree in Public health. She is from Somalia, and lived in Nairobi, Kenya, before she arrived in Boise, Idaho 8 years ago. She interned with the Idaho Suicide Prevention Program and is currently interning with the College Bound Program. As a…Watch the video
Turning Pages: Tai Simpson reads from Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History
From Turning Pages: “The Storyteller” is Tai Simpson’s name in the Indigenous language of the Nez Perce Tribe. Tai studied Sociology and Political Philosophy at Boise State University. In the community, she serves as an organizer for the Indigenous Idaho Alliance and works as a Social Change Advocate with the Idaho Coalition Against Sexual &…Watch the video
Turning Pages: RJay Barsh reads from Kia the Queen
From Turning Pages: RJay Barsh is an Assistant Basketball Coach at Boise State and Generation Wellness Trainer. Barsh, originally from Tacoma, Washington, spent seven seasons as the head coach at Southeastern University (NAIA) in Lakeland, Florida. While with SEU, Barsh led the Fire to three NAIA Division II National Tournament appearances and a Final Four,…Watch the video