BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Children's book author and musician Johnette Downing is receiving the 18th Louisiana Writer Award for her contributions to the state's literary and cultural life.
Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser's office announced the award recipient, describing Downing as having a "special gift for making Louisiana's unique culture come alive for children around the world."
Downing will receive the award on Oct. 28 during the opening ceremony of the Louisiana Book Festival at the state capitol. She is the author of 22 children's books including "Petit Pierre and the Floating Marsh" and "Why the Crawfish Lives in the Mud."
In a statement, Downing said she is "humbled" to be included among past recipients who include Ernest Gaines, Darrell Bourque, Christine Wiltz, Tom Piazza and fellow children's book author William Joyce.