Leslie Stall Widener’s nonfiction debut as a picture book author, Kindred Spirits: Shilombish Ittibachʋffa, will release in summer 2024 from Charlesbridge Publishing. She’s written for several educational houses, including Benchmark Educational Publishing, Gibbs-Smith, and Core Knowledge Foundation (as author/illustrator.)
She has illustrated six Choctaw related picture books: Chukfi Rabbit’s Big, Bad Bellyache, told by Greg Rodgers. Re-releases, Lee &Low, 2024.; The Turkey Who Liked to Show Off; Why the Turtle Has Cracks on His Back; The Story of Tanchi; Why the ‘Possum Has No Hair on His Tail; Why Rabbit Has a Short Tail, all published by the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma in English and Choctaw; and Imagine the Moon – A Primer of Full Moon Names by Gerald Fierst. Plum Street Publishers, 2017.
Leslie serves as Native Fund Chair for We Need Diverse Books (diversebooks.org) and is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.
Leslie is a Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma tribal member and a registered Choctaw artist.
Originally from Tulsa, Oklahoma, Texas has been her home since 1980. She lives 30 miles north of Dallas in McKinney with her husband, artist Terry Widener.