January 18, 2020

ALA Announces 10 Winners of the “I Love My Librarian Award”; 1,974 Nominations Received For This Year’s Award

From the American Library Association:

Today the American Library Association (ALA) announced 10 winners of the prestigious I Love My Librarian Award. Recipients are dynamic librarians from academic, public and school libraries who were nominated by patrons nationwide for their profound impact on the lives of families, students, teachers and information seekers in their communities.

The I Love My Librarian Award honors librarians who go above and beyond traditional library service. This coveted award was established in 2008 and recognizes outstanding public service that has transformed lives through education and lifelong learning. ALA has received more than 19,000 nominations since the award’s inception, but only 120 librarians have received this distinguished honor.

“Our nation’s librarians serve the needs and aspirations of their communities by promoting education, employment, entrepreneurship, empowerment and engagement,” said American Library Association President Wanda Kay Brown. “Congratulations to this year’s I Love My Librarian Award recipients, who represent the highest qualities in social service and transform lives every day.”

ALA received 1,974 nominations for this year’s award detailing the incredible achievements of librarians across the country and highlighting the indispensable role librarians play within their communities, schools and campuses. Award recipients include three academic librarians, three public librarians and four school librarians.

This year’s winners are:

Jesús Alonso-Regalado
University at Albany, SUNY, Albany, N.Y.
Alonso-Regalado is acknowledged for his work in supporting information literacy through his “Librarian with a Latte” program and his commitment to ensuring access to textbooks regardless of a student’s ability to pay.

Stephanie Dannehl
Bertrand (Neb.) Community School
Dannehl is the first-ever Nebraska librarian to receive this honor and is recognized for bringing innovative technology to students, including mixed reality and 3D design.

Cathy Evans
St. Mary’s Episcopal School, Memphis, Tenn. 
Evans is honored for her ability to empower students to safely explore difficult topics (like mental illness and racism) through a “Fireside Chat” series and self-help resources.

Melissa Glanden
Powhatan (Va.) High School
Glanden is recognized for physically transforming the school’s library into a “chill zone” that offers maker spaces and flexible seating, as well as innovative partnerships with English and carpentry classes.

MaryAnne Hansen
Montana State University, Bozeman, Mont. 
Hansen is honored for her leadership and her work with the Tribal College Librarians Professional Development Institute, which provides key professional development opportunities for librarians serving Indigenous college students.
 
Homa Naficy
Hartford (Conn.) Public Library
Naficy is honored for her leadership and work with “The American Place,” the library’s comprehensive resource center for immigrants and refugees. She also works to provide low-income adults with job training and extended access to technology.

Maria Papanastassiou
Arlington Heights (Ill.) Memorial Library
Papanastassiou is honored for her work in making the library more accessible, including instituting “Early Open for Families with Special Needs,” and in recognition of Papanastassion’s efforts to create a welcoming playgroup for special needs children and meet-ups for caregivers and developmental therapists.

Leah Plocharczyk 
Florida Atlantic University, Jupiter, Fla. 
Plocharczyk is recognized for her work with marine biologists on an experiment studying dolphin migration patterns and her work with adults with intellectual disabilities and special education academic research.

Janet Tom
San Francisco Public Library
Tom is honored for her innovative “Death and Dying” program series, which helps community members deal with grief and dispels the taboo around discussing our mortality, and her work with San Francisco Chinese Alzheimer’s Association to create a Cantonese/English bilingual forum for elders and their caregivers.

Tracie Walker-Reed
H. Grady Spruce High School, Dallas, Texas
Walker-Reed is honored for her 1:1 tutoring and mentoring of at-risk and low-income students. Nominators highlighted Walker-Reed’s support of the school’s learning process through instruction, technology support, and access to print and digital library books.

Learn More, Direct to 2019 Info Page

Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) 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 Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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