Catherine Tong (seated at left), Bridget Kowalczyk (seated center), and Tiffany Bradford-Oldham (seated at right) speak about the speech and debate program they run at San José (Calif.) Public Library at the American Library Association's 2022 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Washington, D.C., on June 25. Photo by Rebecca Lomax/American Libraries.

Up for Debate

June 25, 2022

Since then, the library has offered six speech and debate series for grades 3–5 over Zoom, with each 12-week session focused on a different social justice topic, such as Black Lives Matter, anti-Asian sentiment, and climate change. Instructors from the program shared insights into their curriculum and success at “Inspiring the Next Generation to Champion … Continue reading Up for Debate


John Cho

Breaking the Cycle

June 25, 2022

Cho used the 1992 Los Angeles riots as a backdrop for exploring Jordan’s family dynamic. “The boy [Jordan] sees the LA riots and it’s a personal problem,” he said. “It endangers his father … The father sees it as a livelihood issue—they’re threatening my store, perhaps, and the store is our college fund, it’s food, … Continue reading Breaking the Cycle



2022 Annual Conference Preview

2022 Annual Conference Preview

June 1, 2022

In addition to the face-to-face networking opportunities that so many have missed, Annual will offer a full slate of programs, including educational sessions, author talks, exhibit hall attractions, and new ideas to shape the future of libraries. Also available is the Digital Experience, a virtual option for those who cannot attend the celebration in the … Continue reading 2022 Annual Conference Preview


Call Number episode 69: Year-End Author Chats

Call Number Podcast: Year-End Author Chats

December 27, 2021

Featured in this installment are never-before-released clips from conversations with Fox Sports analyst and former NFL linebacker Emmanuel Acho, acclaimed writer Isabel Allende, reggae musician and philanthropist Ziggy Marley, TV host and producer Padma Lakshmi, bestselling horror author Max Brooks, Dance Theatre of Harlem alumni Judy Tyrus and Paul Novosel, and lawyer and speaker Savala … Continue reading Call Number Podcast: Year-End Author Chats


2021 ALA Annual Conference and Exhibition Virtual

2021 Annual Conference Wrap-Up

July 8, 2021

Headlining speakers talked about books, libraries, and the exchange of ideas in the greater context of major societal challenges. Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and Opening Session speaker Nikole Hannah-Jones, who developed the 1619 Project for The New York Times Magazine, recalled an elective course on Black studies she took as a teenager. “It was the first … Continue reading 2021 Annual Conference Wrap-Up


Barack Obama

Hope and Harmony

June 29, 2021

Interviewed by Lonnie Bunch III, the first African American secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, and introduced by ALA President Julius C. Jefferson Jr., Obama talked about A Promised Land (Crown, November 2020)—the first of two memoirs spanning his paradigm-breaking presidency—and the role of libraries in shaping the story of American democracy. “A Promised Land chronicles … Continue reading Hope and Harmony


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Council III: Resolutions and Updates

June 29, 2021

Memorials were read for John T. Ma (M#9), Vartan Gregorian (M#10), Kathie Coblentz (M#11), Henrietta M. Smith (M#12), Cheryl McCarthy (M#13), Eleanor “Penny” Brome (M#14), Latanya N. Jenkins (M#15), Anita Schiller (M#16), Xiaoqiu Li (M#17), Bernadette Storck (M#18), William C. Robinson (M#19), Margaret R. Myers (M#20), Michele Leber (M#21), Leonard Kniffel (M#22), William G. Asp … Continue reading Council III: Resolutions and Updates


Amy Franco

The Struggle Is Real

June 29, 2021

“Nurses and social workers get the support that they need to recognize and cope with compassion fatigue, but in the world of libraries it’s a relative unknown,” she said. “We generally do not do a good job of promoting our own health and well-being.” Franco introduced attendees to the body’s major stress chemicals—adrenaline and cortisol—and … Continue reading The Struggle Is Real


Julius C. Jefferson Jr. and Crosby Kemper III

Realms of Opportunity

June 29, 2021

Kemper started his position in January 2020 with “mixed messages”—he’d been appointed by a president who had proposed defunding IMLS over three consecutive years and unanimously confirmed in the Senate, which had approved increases for the agency over the same period. There was no time to process the president’s fourth proposed elimination before the pandemic … Continue reading Realms of Opportunity


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Council II: Restructuring and Sustainability

June 28, 2021

ALA Executive Director Tracie D. Hall presented the review of Executive Board actions taken since the 2021 Midwinter Meeting (CD#15.1) and the implementation report on Council actions taken at Midwinter (CD#9.1). In a carryover from Council I earlier in the day, Forward Together Resolutions Working Group (FTRWG) cochairs Christina Rodriques and Jack Martin presented their … Continue reading Council II: Restructuring and Sustainability


Confronting the Myth of Neutrality

The Myth of Neutrality

June 28, 2021

“The act of education is an act of vulnerability, the willingness to open up to the possibility of a new worldview or at the very least be exposed to it even if it doesn’t shift your own,” said Stacy Collins, research and instruction librarian at Simmons University in Boston. There are those who arrive at … Continue reading The Myth of Neutrality