Meet the small-but-mighty team behind Bushel & Peck Books
David is an award-winning and bestselling author and illustrator. He grew up on the East Coast as one of seven kids. He started early in publishing, producing his first book at age eighteen through a contest by Landmark Editions. Since then, he has worked as a graphic designer, instructor, author, illustrator, and creative director. Most recently, he was the publishing director for Familius where he helped the company become one of Publishers Weekly's 2018 Fastest Growing Independent Publishers. David was the General Management Outstanding Graduate of his BYU Marriott School class and was named a 2018 Publishers Weekly Star Watch Nominee. His favorite thing in life is being a husband and dad, because really, that's even better than donuts.
- Favorite book: A Wrinkle in Time
- Favorite Crayola crayon: Macaroni and Cheese
- Can't live without: Butter
- Political party: Nice try
Co-founder; Charitable Giving
First and foremost, Stephanie is a mom to a wonderful boy named Tucker. For several years, she has worked as a preschool teacher and aid for kids with special needs. But Stephanie is also a warrior. In 2011, she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). As a single mom, she worked her way through school and graduated from Fresno State with a degree in child development. Stephanie is also the author of over a dozen books for kids, including a bestselling regional board book series. In her free time, she loves to cycle, garden, decorate, and count her son's freckles.
- Favorite book: Tuesdays with Morrie
- Outfit of choice: Sweats
- Can't live without: Boston Baked Beans
- Would most love to meet: Sasquatch
Tucker loves reading, sports, and playing his favorite video game: Fortnite! He also has keen opinions on which illustrators Bushel & Peck uses for its books.
- Favorite book: The Chronicles of Narnia
- Favorite pastime: Getting dubs
- Can't live without: Orange soda ("Is it true?")
- Would give an Academy Award to: Avatar The Way of Water
Michelle Bayuk brings her life-long love of books and reading to a long career of helping put books into the hands of children. She has led the marketing efforts for numerous US publishers and organizations, including for the Quarto Group (US children's), Egmont USA, Albert Whitman & Company, and the Children's Book Council.
- Favorite book: Nope, nice try!
- Favorite Newbery winner: The Witch of Blackbird Pond
- Can't live without: Stories
- Favorite non-reading pastime: Walking with friends
Dean Burrell has been making books for more than 30 years, specializing in subjects ranging from lifestyle and self-help to art and design to memoir and fiction to food and craft. He honed his editorial skills by learning from the best, first at Harper San Francisco and then at Chronicle Books. He enjoys working with all team members, liaising between authors and clients, editors, designers, and print buyers. Above all, he adheres to a publishing philosophy that says every project begins with a vision. It’s this vision, clearly and succinctly defined, that drives each project to success. Dean was born in a small town in Upstate New York—the birthplace of Jell-O—and spent quality time in New Hampshire while attending college. After the startling realization that snowstorms are best enjoyed somewhere else, Dean fled the cold winters and settled in Northern California.
Ryan G. Van Cleave
Editor; Head of Strategic Alliances
Ryan is the kid who developed lousy eyesight thanks to reading by flashlight under the covers way too late at night. After earning a Ph.D. in English/Creative Writing at Florida State University, Ryan went on to teach writing at seven colleges and universities. These days, Ryan runs the Creative Writing major at Ringling College of Art and Design in addition to working as The Picture Book Whisperer, a keynote conference speaker, a ghostwriter, and—time permitting!—a writer of their own books. After watching David’s fine work with Familius and then Bushel & Peck, Ryan teamed up with him in 2022 because they share a passion for making beautiful kidlit books that matter. Ryan’s favorite thing is being a dad to two terrific kids—even if they sometimes choose video games over Ryan’s books.
- Favorite book: The Great Gatsby
- Organizes books: Autobiographically
- Can't live without: Root beer
- Favorite sports team: Chicago Bears
Cate Berry is a creative cliff diver, a playful communicator, a hard-core listener, an addict for the color pink and a belly-laughing lover of life. She's visited forty-nine out of fifty states, published five children's books and holds an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Ms. Berry has presented at the Texas Book Festival, West Texas Book Fest, and many SCBWI Conferences (faculty). In earlier lifetimes, she was a professional actress and songwriter in New York City. The ocean is her favorite body of water but Texas rivers come close. Cate is passionate about reading and a sucker for picture books with humor and heart. She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and two teenagers that surprise her daily, in the best possible ways.
- Wishes she wrote: Bread and Jam for Francis
- Has too many: Eyeglasses
- Can't live without: Coffee, coffee, coffee
- Superpower: Can talk to tree stumps