Author Archive: Anne Ford

Tom Green County Library System in San Angelo, Texas, is closed to walk-ins but offering curbside checkout services, as explained by this image from their website.

Staying Open during COVID-19

March 23, 2020

But as of Monday, March 23, a handful of public and academic libraries were still serving patrons in person. “[Southeastern Idaho] Public Health said that we should maintain services, and they’re the experts, right?” says Robert Wright, director of Idaho Falls (Idaho) Public Library (IFPL), which has canceled all programming but remains open for the … Continue reading Staying Open during COVID-19


Graphic: 50th anniversary of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA)

Living the Dream

March 2, 2020

How has the situation of African Americans in the profession changed since BCALA’s founding? Well, “it hasn’t gotten any worse,” says Trevor Dawes, vice provost for libraries and museums and May Morris University Librarian at University of Delaware, as well as past BCALA executive board member and BCALA liaison to ALA until last year. “We … Continue reading Living the Dream


Illustration: Kristen Solecki

Fact Versus Fear

March 2, 2020

The flames of any mistrust that might have already surrounded this census have been fanned at least twice: First, by the new option to complete the form online, which may be met with diffidence by the 52% of American adults whom the Pew Research Center calls “relatively hesitant” about using digital tools, and which may … Continue reading Fact Versus Fear


Wes Moore

2020 Midwinter Wrap-Up

February 6, 2020

“How much pain are we willing to tolerate when we know we don’t have to?” asked opening speaker Wes Moore, CEO of anti-poverty organization Robin Hood, US Army combat veteran, and one of many speakers who addressed race and inequality. His forthcoming book (with Erica L. Green) Five Days: The Fiery Reckoning of an American City … Continue reading 2020 Midwinter Wrap-Up


Andrea Telli, Chicago Public Libraries commissioner

Newsmaker: Andrea Telli

February 4, 2020

American Libraries spoke with Telli about her path to librarianship, her plans for CPL’s future, and the effects of CPL’s fine-free policy. I understand that you didn’t originally plan to become a librarian. I actually have a master’s degree in medieval and Renaissance Spanish literature. So marketable! Then I received a fellowship, and as part … Continue reading Newsmaker: Andrea Telli




Lindy West (Photo: Jenny Jimenez)

Newsmaker: Lindy West

November 1, 2019

American Libraries spoke with West about the book, body politics, and social media. Where does the title of your new book come from? The Witches Are Coming grew out of this phenomenon where people try to deflect accountability by claiming that any accusation of wrongdoing is a witch hunt and not real. It’s an obvious … Continue reading Newsmaker: Lindy West


Seniors dating

From the Library with Love

November 1, 2019

Fortunately, there’s the library—not as a place to make romantic connections per se, but as a resource for older adults who want to learn how to navigate the world of online dating. Several public libraries have begun offering programs that help older patrons safely and effectively meet potential partners on the internet. Among those are … Continue reading From the Library with Love


Referenda Roundup (Illustration: Tom Deja)

Referenda Roundup 2019

October 24, 2019

ALABAMA In Leeds, voters rejected a proposed property tax increase of 9 mills by 1,506 to 971 in January. The funds generated would have gone toward the construction of a new library as well as a new high school athletics complex and other projects. ARIZONA In Phoenix, Proposition 106—which would have capped budgets for some … Continue reading Referenda Roundup 2019


Mind Your Business(es)

September 30, 2019

PLYMC Business and Investment Librarian Ed Koltonski offers these tips for supporting small business success: Work with local groups that also support business development. The BIC works closely with many other partners in the area, including the Youngstown chapter of the SCORE business mentoring network, the local business incubator, and other public libraries. “I’ve been … Continue reading Mind Your Business(es)


Students Olivia Ricketts (left), Simone Moonsammy (center), and Lydia Hall from the University of Georgia School of Social Work provide trauma-informed services and training at Athens-Clarke County (Ga.) Library. (Photo: Caleb Guice)

Toward a Trauma-Informed Model

June 3, 2019

“She said she felt like she was being struck,” explains Caroline Sharkey. A licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) on the faculty of the University of Georgia’s School of Social Work in Athens, Sharkey heard the story from a librarian acquaintance who witnessed the incident. As it happened, the woman had experienced domestic violence that led … Continue reading Toward a Trauma-Informed Model