Photo Credit: Brian McConkey


Claire Hartfield is the 2019 Coretta Scott King Book Awards Author Winner and a 2019 Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist.

Hartfield’s most recent book, A Few Red Drops: The Chicago Race Riot of 1919 (Clarion 2018) has also been honored as a Junior Library Guild Choice, a 2019 Illinois Reading Council Top Book, and a Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Books 2018. 

Hartfield’s book, Me and Uncle Romie (Dial Books for Young Children 2002), is a historical fiction picture book based on the life and art of world-renowned collage artist, Romare Bearden.  The book received national honors (favorable review in the NYT Book Review, Smithsonian Magazine Notable Book of the Year, Junior Library Guild Choice, one of New York Public Library’s 100 Books for Reading and Sharing) and has been reprinted in three textbooks.

Hartfield’s career has centered on providing underprivileged children with opportunity to achieve their potential through education.  After graduating from Yale University and University of Chicago Law School, she oversaw development of school desegregation plans for the cities of Chicago and Rockford, Illinois.  More recently, she led a non-profit organization that develops leaders for elementary and secondary education.  She is currently Board Chair and a senior consultant for one of Chicago’s highest performing charter schools.

Hartfield is a lifelong resident of Chicago.