Author Archive: Terra Dankowski

"Resilience" session panelists

Partners for Progress

January 23, 2021

It’s a question that Matthew Stinchcomb, cofounder of the Lifeboats HV initiative and keynote speaker at the American Library Association’s 2021 Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits Virtual on-demand session “Resilience: How Libraries Can Partner to Reshape the Future,” thinks about often. “If you look at the data on climate change and ecological destruction, there’s no doubt … Continue reading Partners for Progress


From left: Lori Berezovsky, David J. Kelsey, and Cathy Zimmerman

Adapting Outreach

January 23, 2021

At “Exploring Ways to Jazz Up Your Bookmobile, Outreach, or Book Bike Program during COVID-19,” a January 23 session at the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits Virtual, officers from the Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services (ABOS) led a discussion on these questions and more and addressed how their roles are being reimagined … Continue reading Adapting Outreach


Natalie Baszile

Voices from the Land

January 22, 2021

“Farming is an integral part of our national identity,” she told viewers from the Diversity In Publishing stage at the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits Virtual on January 22. “Land represents freedom, independence, and self-determination.” But Baszile, herself a great-great-granddaughter of a farmer and beekeeper who lived near Tuskegee, Alabama, saw that Black … Continue reading Voices from the Land



Emmanuel Acho. Photo: Ali Rasoul

Newsmaker: Emmanuel Acho

January 20, 2021

American Libraries caught up with Acho ahead of his January 24 appearance at the American Library Association’s 2021 Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits Virtual to discuss his series and book, as well as equity in professional sports and the power of libraries. Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man—the name of your YouTube series and book—is such … Continue reading Newsmaker: Emmanuel Acho


Lori Nyce, librarian at the National Toy Train Library in Ronks, Pennsylvania. Photo: Eric Forberger

Bookend: All Aboard

January 4, 2021

“Our focus is anything toy trains and model railroading,” says librarian Lori Nyce (pictured). “We get calls sometimes wanting us to look up information on real locomotives—we tend to have to refer them.” Nyce and Library Assistant Tyler Keck stay on track answering reference questions (mostly from TCA members, authors, and hobbyists hoping to identify … Continue reading Bookend: All Aboard


Libraries rise to the challenge of maintaining services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Photos: Nicole Johnson/Grand Rapids (Minn.) Area Library (drive-through); Robyn Huff (reopening); Pottsboro (Tex.) Area Library (e-sports); Tina Chenoweth (Animal Crossing)

Bookend: The New Normal

July 1, 2020

Some of our favorite examples of libraries meeting this challenge in creative ways, clockwise from top left: Michelle L. Johnson, cataloging technician at Grand Rapids (Minn.) Area Library, passes books through a drive-through window. The library averaged 50 pickups per day following the expiration of state stay-at-home orders May 18. Delray Beach (Fla.) Public Library … Continue reading Bookend: The New Normal


Author and Sesame Street actor Sonia Manzano

Celebrate the World

June 25, 2020

“I’ve noticed an awful shift in the social behavior of American culture. Nowadays, [people] feel to cooperate with someone is a sign of weakness,” she explained to Gary Knell, chairman of National Geographic Partners and former CEO of Sesame Workshop, in a conversation aired at ALA Virtual June 25. “Nowadays, it’s not enough to win—you … Continue reading Celebrate the World


Honoring and Respecting Relationship: Rethinking Library Praxis

Decolonizing Knowledge

June 25, 2020

Camille Callison, Indigenous strategies librarian at University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, commenced the American Indian Library Association President’s Program “Honoring and Respecting Relationship: Rethinking Library Praxis” June 25 at ALA Virtual by introducing herself as member of the Tahltan Nation and recapping some of the racist and problematic actions Canada has inflicted upon Indigenous people. … Continue reading Decolonizing Knowledge


Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services Past-President Susan Parkins and President Cathy Zimmerman

Reimagining the Bookmobile

June 25, 2020

At “Outdoing Outreach in a Post–COVID-19 World,” a June 25 live session at ALA Virtual, two Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services (ABOS) board members discussed how their work has evolved in the face of coronavirus. “We woke up one morning and the entire world had changed,” said Cathy Zimmerman, ABOS president and bookmobile associate … Continue reading Reimagining the Bookmobile


Sophia Thakur

Books as Escape

June 24, 2020

Thakur, debut author of Somebody Give This Heart a Pen (Candlewick, September) and featured speaker at ALA Virtual on June 24, remarked on libraries’ ability to offer enrichment, empowerment, and empathy. “Anything that can meet you at the point of your desire to escape will forever hold a sacred place,” she said. “My escape enriched … Continue reading Books as Escape