PLA now accepting applications and nominations for 2020 Awards

CHICAGO – Through the generosity of its sponsors, the Public Library Association (PLA) is proud to offer ten awards and grants for 2020. The PLA Awards are designed to highlight the best in public library service and programming and to honor those bringing innovation, creativity and dedication to public libraries. PLA is currently accepting applications and nominations for the following awards and grants:

  • Allie Beth Martin Award, honoring a public librarian who has demonstrated extraordinary range and depth of knowledge about books or other library materials and has the distinguished ability to share that knowledge. Sponsored by Baker & Taylor.
  • Baker & Taylor Entertainment Audio Music/Video Product Award, promoting the development of a circulating audio music/video collection in a public library.
  • Charlie Robinson Award, honoring a public library director who, over a period of seven years, has been a risk taker, an innovator and/or a change agent in a public library. Sponsored by Baker & Taylor.
  • EBSCO Excellence in Rural Library Service Award, honoring a public library serving a population of 10,000 or less with an upper per capita income limit of not more than the 75th quartile of the national average that demonstrates excellence of service to its community.
  • Gordon M. Conable Award, honoring a public library staff member, library trustee or public library that has demonstrated a commitment to intellectual freedom and the Library Bill of Rights.
  • John Iliff Award, honoring a library worker, librarian or library that has used technology as a tool to improve services. 
  • New Leaders Travel Grant, enhancing the professional development of new public librarians by making possible their attendance at major professional development activities.
  • PLA Library Innovation Award, recognizing a public library’s innovative and creative service program to the community.
  • Romance Writers of America Library Grant, providing a public library the opportunity to build or expand its romance fiction collection and/or host romance fiction programming.
  • The Singer Group Helping Communities Come Together Award, recognizing a public library’s ability to identify community needs specifically in times of crisis and division, and respond in creative and exemplary ways to critical challenges.

Participation in the PLA Awards brings numerous benefits. Aside from the award plaques, grants, and honoraria, the winners and their libraries are recognized through PLA communications. Award recipients will also be honored during a special presentation at the PLA Member Breakfast at the 2020 ALA Annual Conference in Chicago, Ill. Click here to learn about our 2019 award and grant recipients.

Please visit the website for details on each award and nominate yourself, a colleague, or your library. The Application/Nomination Portal will remain open until 11:59 p.m. Central Time on Friday, Dec. 6, 2019. PLA reserves the right to extend the deadline.

An award jury appointed by the PLA President will review each nomination, and the results will be announced in February 2020. PLA Award applicants grant PLA/ALA authorization to use application content, recordings, photos, and all other materials arising from the award application and acceptance process. For more information, contact the PLA office, (800) 545-2433, ext. 5PLA or by email [email protected].

PLA could not offer these awards without the generosity of its 2020 sponsors: Baker & Taylor, EBSCO, Romance Writers of America, and The Singer Group (now part of Segal Waters Consulting).

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About PLA
PLA is the largest association dedicated to supporting the unique and evolving needs of public library professionals. Founded in 1944, PLA serves nearly 10,000 members in public libraries large and small in communities across the United States and Canada, with a growing presence around the world. PLA strives to help its members shape the essential institution of public libraries by serving as an indispensable ally for public library leaders. For more information about PLA, contact the PLA office at 1 (800) 545-2433, ext.5PLA, or [email protected].

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