Beverly Cleary was born on April 12, 1916. Her family lived on a small farm in McMinnville, Oregon, before moving to Portland. Ironically, this internationally known author of childrens books struggled to learn how to read when she entered school. Before long however Cleary had learned to love books, and as a child she spent a good deal of her time in the public library. Cleary earned her first B.A. in 1938 from the University of California at Berkeley. Her second degree, a B.A. in library science, was bestowed by the University of Washington in Seattle in 1939. She worked for a short time as Childrens Librarian in Yakima, Washington, before moving to California. Cleary began her writing career in her early thirties. Her stories and especially her characters, Henry Huggins and Ramona Quimby, have proven popular with young readers. Her books have been translated into fourteen languages and are available in over twenty countries. Some of her best known titles are Ellen Tebbits (1951), Henry and the Paper Route (1957), Runaway Ralph (1970), and Dear Mr. Henshaw (1983). Several television programs have been produced from the Henry Huggins and Ramona stories. Cleary has won many awards for her contributions to childrens literature, including the American Library Associations Laura Ingalls Wilder Award in 1975, the Catholic Library Associations Regina Medal in 1980 and the John Newbery Medal in 1984.