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e.E. Charlton-Trujillo, Executive Director

When we see our stories as necessary and valuable,

we can begin to see ourselves that way.

Raised in rural south Texas, Mexican American author, filmmaker and youth literacy activist e.E. Charlton-Trujillo speaks to thousands of kids and numerous educators and librarians each year. They have been called a "force of nature" by Kirkus Reviews for their work with youth.

Trujillo is the author of a number of award-winning books for teens and children that have been described as "cinematic" "necessary" and "realistic" to the experience of youth.

Having grown up in a book dessert without creative mentorship, Trujillo recognizes how the lack of access impacts young people in the classroom and in life.


Trujillo has an MFA in Filmmaking from Ohio University and a BA in English from Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. They're received training from the National Coalition Building Institute and have participated in several Challenge Day events.


Gia Gordon,

When kids recognize themselves in the pages of a book, it empowers them to recognize the humanity in others.

Originally from southern California, Gia Gordon is a Texas-based author, youth activist, and former public school educator. 

"Growing up, I was a very reluctant reader and not a stellar student. What interested me was art, but I didn't have the support at home. And while I'm honored for my time in the classroom, I know the lack of support at home and in school for what I loved the most kept me from feeling like I had a voice. That what I say mattered. I carry that awareness into the work I do with Never Counted Out. 


When she’s not working with NCO or writing, Gia can be found thrifting, or turning no-longer-wanted household goods into beautifully painted designs at Salvage Art


Pat Zietlow Miller, Communications

It's important to tell your stories,

but it's equally important to listen to other people's stories because that's how we find out we're more similar than different.

Wisconsin born and raised, the NYT bestselling author of 23 books for children. After years of working in communications in corporate America, Pat pivoted to writing full-time for children as well as fostering literacy opportunities in Wisconsin. A frequent speaker at conferences, book events, and libraries, Miller’s love of story and the impact it has on communities makes her one of the best creators in the picture book industry. Her book, Sophie’s Squash, won an Ezra Jack Keats new author honor, a Charlotte Zolotow honor and the Golden Kite Award. Her books Be Kind and Be Strong have been used in classrooms across the country to teach social and emotional learning concepts.

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