May 24, 2022

Library Services and Programming: Urban Libraries Council (ULC) Announces 2018 Top Innovators and Honorable Mentions

From the Urban Libraries Council:

2018-09-10_13-47-31The Urban Libraries Council  has recognized 20 libraries for their innovative programs, services and operating practices – from race and social equity to civic engagement and economic development.

The 2018 Top Innovators and Honorable Mentions were presented during a special Innovations Celebration on September 6. The event was part of ULC’s 2018 Annual Forum—Leading Forward. Award winners were chosen by a panel of expert judges who considered 220 submissions in 10 categories of library service and operations.

“The modern library is a public laboratory, continually thinking of and executing bold, new and purposeful programs that benefit us all,” said Susan Benton, Urban Libraries Council President and CEO. “I congratulate these libraries and all public libraries who demonstrate a commitment to transformative and creative community leadership.”

The Award-Winning Top Innovators and Honorable Mentions include:

Education: Birth through Teens

Top Innovator: San Francisco Public Library “FOG Readers: Helping Struggling Readers Succeed”

Honorable Mention: Lexington Public Library “Snow Day Mini-Videos”

Education: Adults

Top Innovator: Brooklyn Public Library “Teacher Lab: Library Literacy and Classroom Teachers”

Honorable Mention: San Jose Public Library “Empowerment Through Writing” 


Top Innovator: Ottawa Public Library “Offering Express eBooks”

Honorable Mention: DC Public Library “The Memory Lab Network”

Customer Experience

Top Innovator: Spokane Public Library “Lilac City Live”

Honorable Mention: Howard County Library System “DIY Education Center” 

Positioning the Library

Top Innovator: Austin Public Library “Austin Public Library Social Media Ambassadors”

Honorable Mention: Gwinnett County Public Libraries “Expanding Library Access with Livestream and Video”

Workforce and Economic Development

Top Innovator: Hartford Public Library “Immigrant Career Pathways Initiative”

Honorable Mention: Providence Public Library “Rhode Coders and Data Navigators: Technology Careers”

Race and Social Equity

Top Innovator: Pima County Public Library “Library Restorative Practices for Youth”

Honorable Mention: Edmonton Public Library “Voices of Amiskwaciy”

Civic and Community Engagement

Top Innovator: Los Angeles Public Library “New Americans Initiative”

Honorable Mention: Montgomery County Public Libraries “Reading and Educating to Advnace Lives: REAL Change”

Health, Safety and Sustainability

Top Innovator: Broward County Library “BCLFit Wellness Centers”

Honorable Mention: Kansas City Public Library “Be Smart Safe Gun Storage”

Organizational Change and Strategic Management

Top Innovator: San Mateo County Libraries “Building Engagement to Accelerate Employee Performance”

Honorable Mention: Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library “Creating a Dynamic, Modern Library Staffing Model”

Learn More, Details About Each Program and Library
24 pages; PDF.

See Also: Learn About About Innovation Awards (Winners and Submissions, 2010-1018)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.