2016 ALA Annual Conference Must-Dos

Join the conversation in Orlando, Florida, from June 23–28

May 2, 2016

2016 ALA Annual Conference in Orlando, Florida
2016 ALA Annual Conference in Orlando, Florida

Interact with thousands of the most motivated, committed, and imaginative people in the field. Make great connections, choose among hundreds of learning opportunities, and get the latest on products, services, technologies, and new titles. It’s all awaiting you in Orlando!

Use the Preliminary Program to start planning how you’ll be “transforming our libraries, ourselves” at the 2016 ALA Conference and Exhibition.

Focus on the future

Join ALA’s Center for the Future of Libraries for Library of the Future sessions examining trends in the neuroscience of attention in education (Steelcase), the use of feasibility studies for designing new spaces (OPN Architects), and more.

Some conference content and activities will again be organized around the Libraries Transform campaign. Information about how you and your library can get involved—as well as opportunities to have some fun with it—will be available at the ALA Lounge.

Equity, diversity, and inclusion are critical to a strong future for libraries. Check the list of related recommendations from the Committee on Diversity.

Speakers who inspire

Michael Eric Dyson, one of Essence magazine’s 50 most inspiring African Americans, opens the conference as featured speaker at the Opening General Session (June 24). ALA President Sari Feldman welcomes actress and outspoken immigration reform advocate Diane Guerrero to the President’s Program (June 26). Award-winning actress and bestselling children’s author Jamie Lee Curtis will close the conference after Feldman passes the gavel to 2016–2017 ALA President Julie Todaro and introduces the new ALA division presidents at the Closing General Session (June 27).

Auditorium speakers include: Margaret Atwood, award-winning author and current vice president of PEN International; Jazz Jennings, transgender teen activist and one of the youngest and most prominent voices on gender identity; Brad Meltzer, bestselling author of nonfiction, suspense, children’s books, comic books, creator of TV shows, and Honorary Chair of ALA’s Preservation Week 2016; Holly Robinson Peete—actress, author, talk show host, activist, and philanthropist—along with her 18-year-old twins Ryan Elizabeth and RJ, exploring funny, painful, and unexpected aspects of teen autism; and Maya Penn, teen entrepreneur and activist whose TEDWomen talk has been viewed more than 1 million times.

ALA divisions and their presidents invite all attendees to see thought-provoking speakers at the Division Presidents’ Programs. As of press time, 2016 speakers include: Michael R. Nelson, who works on internet-related global public policy issues for CloudFlare and Big Data changes and related technology issues (ALCTS); Marty Sklar, former president of Walt Disney Imagineering, with a panel on the intersections of child development, architecture, and stories (ALSC); Safiya Noble, from the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, on culture and technology in the design and use of internet applications (LITA); and Dave Cobb, an expert on designing immersive educational experiences with Thinkwell Group, on how to create an effective “guest experience” in your library (RUSA). Click here for additions and updates.

US Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) will make a special appearance with his award-winning graphic novel series March, alongside co-creators Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the National Endowment for the Humanities (June 25).

In the exhibit hall

Allow plenty of time to explore solutions to pressing issues at your library, network with colleagues, connect with your vendors, browse new products and services, discover the hottest titles, meet dozens of authors, and enjoy live events. The exhibit hall will include Poster Sessions, Book Buzz Theater, Meet the Authors, PopTop Stage, Graphic Novel/Gaming Stage, What’s Cooking @ ALA Demonstration Stage, Artist Alley, and specialty areas such as the Mobile App, Zine, and Diversity pavilions.

Continue the conversation

Attend peer-led Ignite Sessions and Conversation Starters (June 25–27) and keep up with Washington Office Updates throughout the conference. Rich Harwood and three public libraries that participated in ALA’s Libraries Transforming Communities initiative will show how libraries can engage communities and lead change by “turning outward” (June 25). Join Debra Fine at the PR Forum (June 26) to learn how to turn every interaction into an opportunity for a successful library relationship, and visit the ALA JobLIST Placement and Career Development Center (June 25–26) for guidance, workshops, and résumé review.

Ticketed events

Get your tickets for preconferences, award celebrations, the International Librarians’ Reception, the Gala Author Tea, local tours, and the Inaugural Brunch.


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