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28th Annual NEMBA
Thursday, May 26, 2016

Book Fair, Reception, Featured Speaker, and Awards Presentation

Thursday, May 26, 2016
Kirby Ballroom, UMD Campus


5:00 - 6:30  Book Fair / Refreshments
6:30 - 8:00 Speaker Michael Fedo/ Awards Presentation
8:00 - 9:00 Extension of the Book Fair


The 28th annual Northeastern Minnesota Book Awards (NEMBA) will be presented at a public celebration on Thursday, May 26, 2016, at the Kirby Ballroom on the University of Minnesota Duluth campus. The 28th annual NEMBA will honor books published in 2015. The awards showcase and honor authors and books that capture the spirit of the Northland and substanitally represent northeastern Minnesota. The celebration will include featured speaker Michael Fedo, a book fair, and refreshments. The program and awards presentation, in the Kirby Ballroom on the UMD campus, is free and open to the public, with parking available in several lots and meters on campus.

michael fedo
Michael Fedo

This year's speaker, Michael Fedo, is a native of Duluth, a graduate of the University of Minnesota-Duluth and of Kent State University, where he earned a Master's in broadcasting and theater. Fedo briefly taught English at Duluth's Denfeld High School before leaving the area in 1964.

Over the next several decades, he published articles and essays in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Christian Science Monitor, McCalls, Parade, Sports Afield, and Runner's World (where he was a contribuing editor). He has published more than 50 short stories in many magazines and literary quarterlies. Several of Fedo's essays have been broadcast over public radio stations in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Florida.

Fedo is the author of nine books, including locally significant books such as Zenith City: Stories from Duluth and The Lynchings in Duluth.

Nominations for the 28th annual NEMBA are now closed.

NOTE: Winners will not be notified prior to the awards event on May 26, 2016.



Nominations were accepted in one of six categories (nominations closed February 1, 2016):

(1) Nonfiction: nonfiction works such as history, biography, guidebooks, cookbooks, books about science and nature, and scholarly works.

(2) Fiction: novels, short stories, plays, and other works of narrative fiction.

(3) Art, Photography: books that primarily serve to showcase (and annotate) the visual art contained in them.

(4) Children's Literature: books of any type intended for children and young adults.

(5) Poetry: collections of poetry or a single poem of book length.

(6) Memoir: books that examine some aspect of the world from a highly personal perspective whether in the form of a memoir, personal essay, or other work of creative nonfiction.

Reading teams will choose a winner and honorable mention in each category. If a book is nominated in more than one area, the Library NEMBA Team will determine the category for the entry.

Eligibility Requirements and Entry Guidelines:


  • The subject matter of nominated books must substantially represent northeastern Minnesota in the areas of history, culture, heritage, or lifestyle. For the purpose of the awards, northeastern Minnesota includes the following counties: Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Kanabec, Koochiching, Lake, Pine, and St. Louis.
  • Nominated books must have a 2015 publishing date. Books with a 2014 copyright that were not published and available until 2015 may be submitted in the 28th annual NEMBA. A written explanation for why a book with a 2014 copyright is eligible must be submitted along with the nomination form.
  • Nominated books must have been written in English and published in bound paper format or ebook.
  • One copy of each nominated book must be submitted along with an entry form.
  • A $25 NON-REFUNDABLE entry fee is required for each nominated book; checks or money orders only, made payable to the Library.

Nominations for the 28th Annual NEMBA, Honoring Books Published in 2015,
Closed on February 1, 2016


NOTE: Nominations for the 29th annual NEMBA, honoring books published in 2016, will be accepted beginning in October 2016.



The winning author in each category will receive a cash prize of $200. The winning author and the honorable mention in each category will receive a glass plaque and 100 book seals.

Awards Presentation:


Winning and honored authors will be announced at a reception in the Kirby Ballroom on the UMD campus on Thursday, May 26, 2016.

NEMBA winner seal  NEMBA honorable mention seal 
NEMBA Book Seals now available!


Presented by the UMD Kathryn A. Martin Library
416 Library Drive
Duluth, MN 55812

with financial support from Friends of the Duluth Public Library, and our sponsors:

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Phone: 218-726-8102
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Last modified: April 28, 2016
Library Site Coordinator: Kathryn A. Martin Library

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