Author Archive: Phil Morehart

Julia Billet and her translator, Wilfrid Lupano, Ezra Claytan Daniels, and Amy Chu

The Words Behind the Images

June 23, 2019

Moderator Heidi MacDonald, editor-in-chief of comic industry blog The Beat, began by asking the panelists to describe the inspirations behind their most well-known works. Speaking through a translator, French writer Julia Billet said that the story detailed in her graphic novel Catherine’s War, which follows a young Jewish girl during WWII as she journeys across France … Continue reading The Words Behind the Images


Joquetta Johnson

Lyrics as Literature

June 22, 2019

The selections stumped most of the crowd and presented Johnson’s thesis: Music lyrics—especially in hip hop—should be viewed and taught as literature. Doing so, Johnson said, can allow students to find deeper meaning in their favorite songs and open new worlds of personal expression, especially in regard to social justice issues. Johnson’s project “Lyrics as … Continue reading Lyrics as Literature


2019 Emerging Leaders

May 1, 2019

Initiated in 1997 as a one-year program under former ALA President Mary R. Somerville and revived in 2006 under former ALA President Leslie Burger, Emerging Leaders recognizes the best and brightest new leaders in our profession. It’s open to librarians of any age who are new to the profession and who have fewer than five … Continue reading 2019 Emerging Leaders



Nicole A. Cooke at Defeating the Bullies and Trolls in the Library event at Skokie (Ill.) Public Library. Photo: Max Herman.

Defeating Bullies and Trolls

March 15, 2019

“All hell broke loose when just the title of the grant was discovered” she said. In the weeks that followed the report’s release, Cooke’s email address and phone number were disseminated by hate groups and their online followers, leading to harassing phone calls and emails. When she asked for her contact information to be removed … Continue reading Defeating Bullies and Trolls


Melinda Gates (Photo: Jason Bell)

Newsmaker: Melinda Gates

March 1, 2019

Gates spoke with American Libraries at the 2019 American Library Association Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits—where it was revealed that she would serve as this year’s honorary chair of National Library Week. The Moment of Lift is about lifting up women and girls. What do you mean by lift, and why is it so important? I … Continue reading Newsmaker: Melinda Gates


Melinda Gates and Nancy Pearl at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Seattle.

The Moment of Lift

January 27, 2019

Melinda Gates opened her talk at the 2019 American Library Association’s (ALA) Midwinter Meeting in Seattle January 25 with effusive praise for her hosts. Her admiration for libraries is well documented: As cochair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, she has been at the forefront of philanthropic funding for libraries. The Gates Library Foundation, … Continue reading The Moment of Lift



2018 ALA/AIA Library Building Awards

September 4, 2018 The following libraries are winners of the 2018 Library Building Awards, sponsored by the American Institute of Architects and the American Library Association’s Library Leadership and Management Association. The awards recognize the best in library architecture and design and are open to any architect licensed in the United States. Projects may be located anywhere in … Continue reading 2018 ALA/AIA Library Building Awards

As part of its DIY makeover, Francis W. Parker School in Chicago added beanbag chairs to its library. Photo: Francis W. Parker School

Design on the Cheap

September 4, 2018

Start with what you have The first step in any design project, big or small, is intense self-reflection. Brian Lee, architect and design partner at Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill, has designed libraries around the world, including the award-winning Chinatown branch of Chicago Public Library (CPL), which opened in 2015. He stresses the importance of research … Continue reading Design on the Cheap



Students at a teacher’s college in Parwan Province, Afghanistan, learn about the Darakht-e Danesh Library.

2018 Presidential Citations

July 18, 2018

Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan, Canada La Biblioteca Móvil, Guatemala Suzhou Library, China Inner Mongolia Library, China The recipients were selected by a team of IRRT members in consultation with then–ALA President Jim Neal, who recognized them at the 2018 ALA Annual Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans during the IRRT International Librarians Reception … Continue reading 2018 Presidential Citations