E. J. Josey's 1964 Charge "Keep on Pushing"

“Keep on Pushing”

June 27, 2020

“E. J. Josey’s 1964 Charge: ‘Keep on Pushing’” charted the life of E. J. Josey (1924–2009), librarian, educator, author, activist, founding member of BCALA, and 1984–1985 American Library Association (ALA) president. The session opened with images of Black life from the late 1800s to the present and the American civil rights movement, backed by the … Continue reading “Keep on Pushing”



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


From the President by Wanda Kay Brown

Find Your Place within ALA

July 17, 2019

The American Library Association’s (ALA) strength in representing and advocating for librarians and library workers is likewise critical. However, the feedback we frequently receive is that getting involved in an association as complex as ours is daunting and that our Byzantine structure often leads to exclusion and confusion. Over the course of my presidential year, … Continue reading Find Your Place within ALA





Radio host Tom Joyner addresses the crowd at the 10th National Conference of African American Librarians in Atlanta on August 10.

NCAAL Opens in Atlanta

August 11, 2017

After listening to opening remarks from BCALA President Denyvetta Davis and an invocation from Reverend Lorraine Jacques White, attendees rose to participate in an a capella performance of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” also known as the “Negro National Anthem.” The lyrics urged listeners to “march on till victory is won,” and this line in … Continue reading NCAAL Opens in Atlanta




Andrew P. Jackson leading the discussion with the ALA Task Force on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion at the NCAAL Conference in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo Credit: Willie Miller)

A Conversation on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in the ALA

August 7, 2015

Providing context for the conversation, Dawes mentioned the latest demographic data on librarians, which shows a slight narrowing of the gender gap but a disconcerting widening of the racial and ethnic gap. Jackson started the conversation by asking how library associations can positively affect the local landscape of conference cities. Orlando, Florida, the site of … Continue reading A Conversation on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in the ALA


From left: Tasha Burton and Charles Wade, founders of Operation Help or Hush; Scott Bonner, director of the Ferguson Public Library; and moderator Leah Gunning Francis at the Ferguson One Year Later panel during the National Conference of African American Librarians. (Photo credit: Gerald Brooks)

Connecting Libraries and Social Justice

August 6, 2015

Reflecting on the tragic shooting death of Michael Brown and the resulting unrest, the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA) and NCAAL illuminate the role of libraries in meeting the needs of communities working towards social justice. In a short film screened during the 90-minute panel session, Ferguson One Year Later: Community Perspectives—Lessons … Continue reading Connecting Libraries and Social Justice