United for Libraries 2021 Virtual Conference

Advocacy through Storytelling

August 23, 2021

Sessions underscored that stories—of individuals, of libraries, of communities—are at the core of library advocacy. “It’s really all about storytelling,” observed Beth Nawalinski, executive director of United for Libraries, during the conference. Representation in collections At “Auditing Diversity in Library Collections,” Sarah Voels, community engagement librarian at Cedar Rapids (Iowa) Public Library (CRPL), described the … Continue reading Advocacy through Storytelling


Young people sitting in an audience

Recruit, Retain, and Engage

July 8, 2021

Presenters included Lina Bertinelli, workforce librarian at Enoch Pratt Free Library and the Maryland State Library Resource Center in Baltimore; Madeline Jarvis, adult and information services manager at Marion (Iowa) Public Library; Kathy Kosinski, member services and outreach manager at Califa Group, a consortium of California libraries; and Tess Wilson, community engagement coordinator for the … Continue reading Recruit, Retain, and Engage


From the President, by Julius C. Jefferson Jr.

Moving Forward

June 1, 2021

Thanks to all who joined me last summer on the virtual “Holding Space” tour, a conversation series with libraries. I will forever remember you as faithful partners and travel companions as we faced seemingly insurmountable difficulties. Thanks in part to our advocacy, libraries secured federal relief funding of historic proportions. ALA staff and leadership managed … Continue reading Moving Forward



ALA COVID-19 Library Relief Updade

What the American Rescue Plan Act Means for Libraries

March 12, 2021

Of the $200 million for IMLS, $178 million is allocated for the Library Services and Technology Act and will go to state library administrative agencies on a population-based formula. IMLS announced state allotments for ARPA funding in a March 11 press release. Because there is a $2 million state minimum, every state will receive a … Continue reading What the American Rescue Plan Act Means for Libraries



From the Executive Director by Tracie D. Hall

Revolutions Where We Stand

March 1, 2021

Those words seem especially prescient now as we look across the country at the libraries that have struggled most during this period of widespread library defunding and service reductions. Though the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the issue, there has long been an unmistakable correlation between communities that navigate high rates of poverty and those that … Continue reading Revolutions Where We Stand




From the President, by Julius C. Jefferson Jr.

A New Year of Hope

January 4, 2021

Similarly, 2020 made an indelible impression on the history of our country, and it has left us collectively exhausted. Many will remember it as the year we were locked down, Zoomed out, and either lonely or wanting to be alone. We lost loved ones, icons, and champions. We were confronted with furloughs and loss of … Continue reading A New Year of Hope


A Transition Plan for Library Advocates

November 13, 2020

Based on campaign pledges, the Biden-Harris administration will be more favorable to education investment and the values of equity, diversity, and inclusion. President-Elect Joe Biden’s cabinet selections will likely indicate a significant shift in policy around education, telecommunications, workforce issues, and many other areas. However, the change of leadership in the White House does not … Continue reading A Transition Plan for Library Advocates