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Vancouver, BC– The Canadian Book Club Awards (CBCA) is thrilled to announce the formation of its advisory board, which will bring together a distinguished group of professionals from the publishing, marketing, and literary communities. This diverse team of experts will guide the CBCA in its mission to celebrate and promote exceptional books and authors within Canada.

Advisory Board Members:

  • Kristain Oliveria-Barnes
    CBCA Program Director | Manager, Campaign Services, Rakuten Kobo
    With a strong background in campaign services, Kristain brings invaluable experience in digital marketing and a deep understanding of the publishing industry.
  • Megan Williams
    CEO, The Self Publishing Agency
    As the CEO of the Forbes featured publishing house, The Self Publishing Agency, Megan has extensive expertise in supporting independent authors and navigating the self-publishing landscape.
  • Ira Vergani
    Operations Officer, The Self Publishing Agency
    Ira’s background in law and operational insights in the publishing sector will be instrumental in enhancing the CBCA’s strategic initiatives.
  • Nathan Maharaj
    Director, Content Marketing, Rakuten Kobo
    Nathan’s proficiency in content marketing and dedication to promoting literary works will significantly enhance the CBCA’s outreach efforts.
  • Devora Winston
    Brand & Culture-Building Campaigns, Starbucks
    Devora’s expertise in brand development and cultural campaigns will provide a fresh perspective on enhancing CBCA’s national presence and impact with readers and authors. 
  • Ariel Hudnall
    Managing Director, ZG Stories / Festival Marketing Director, Vancouver Writers Fest
    Ariel’s dual roles in managing ZG Stories and directing marketing for the Vancouver Writers Fest position her to provide CBCA with literary award insights.. 
  • Nicole Magas
    Publicist, ZG Stories
    Nicole’s public relations acumen in the publishing industry will be vital in maximizing the timing and pacing of communication and outreach throughout the award season. 
  • Katie Bieksa
    Educator / Award-Winning Author of the National Bestseller, Newport Jane (2022) & Cedar (2023)
    Katie’s extensive board experience brings fundraising, sponsorship experience at an executive level
  • Anna Solnickova
    CPA, CGA / Fractional CFO / Executive Officer, Terry Fox Foundation
    Anna’s financial expertise and executive experience will support the CBCA’s efforts in financial growth and organizational sustainability.
  • Bill Morrison
    Bestselling Author of Lions in the Grass: A Marketing Insider’s Guide to Mass Persuasion (2020) / Newterra Marketing
    Bill’s knowledge in marketing and mass persuasion will enhance the CBCA’s large-scale strategic marketing initiatives 
  • Jody Holford (also known as Sophie Sullivan)
    Award-Winning Author of A Convenient Christmas (2021), Lessons in Love (2022), How to Love Your Neighbor (2023), and Ten Rules for Faking It (2022)
    Jody’s successful career as a prolific author brings an invaluable outlook into what authors experience in the publishing industry

The Goal of CBCA’s Advisory Board:

Traditionally, literary awards focus on specific genres and are judged by a select panel of personalities. While these awards add great value by acknowledging significant literary works, they can limit opportunities for diverse genres and authors. 

As Canada’s largest readers’ choice award, The Canadian Book Club Awards addresses this industry oversight by ensuring the judges are “everyday” readers. Thus, the process is democratized and reflects the true preferences and interests of Canadian readers.

The CBCA Advisory Board will support the scope of literary recognition across all genres and publishing platforms, ensuring inclusivity and representation through a diverse range of voices. 

By pulling expertise from all corners of the publishing industry, the board aims to engage Canadian readers and celebrate the full spectrum of literary contributions, highlighting Canadian literature’s rich diversity and creativity. 

This inclusive approach ensures that all deserving books and authors, regardless of their publishing background—whether large publishing houses, small presses, or independent authors—have the opportunity to be recognized and celebrated for their contributions to written works in Canada.

The CBCA is confident that the new advisory board will play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the awards, ensuring they continue to honour and support the vibrant Canadian literary community.



Kristain Oliveira-Barnes


The Canadian Book Club Awards are open to any English-language book published within the past six years. Self-published, traditionally published, and hybrid-published books are welcome. Authors must hold copyright to their books, and books must be available for purchase in physical form on Amazon. Submissions for 2024 are open until July 31, 2024. Visit The Canadian Book Club Awards website for more details.