From left: Skip Dye, Corporate Committee on Library Investment and vice president of library marketing and digital sales, Penguin Random House; and the Iowa library delegation: Alison Ames Galstad, director, Coralville Public Library; State Librarian Michael Scott; Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa); Nancy Medema, library program director, State Library of Iowa; Michael Wright, director, Dubuque County Library District; Annah Hackett, campus engagement and instruction librarian, Grand View University; and Rebecca Funke, director of library resources, Des Moines Area Community College.

Library Supporters Gear Up for “Year-Round Advocacy”

May 11, 2018

In addition to the participants in Washington, D.C, hundreds of library supporters also registered to participate virtually by connecting with legislators via phone calls, emails, and social media this week. In opening remarks on May 7, ALA President Jim Neal introduced a recurrent theme throughout the livestreamed event: “The thing about advocacy is that it’s … Continue reading Library Supporters Gear Up for “Year-Round Advocacy”


Esti Brennan (left) teaches a class in the DCPL’s central branch lab space. Photo: DCPL

Making Space for Libraries on Capitol Hill during National Library Week

April 6, 2018

To invite members of Congress and their staffers into the world of library makerspaces, the Washington Office is working with DC Public Library (DCPL) to bring its Fab Lab to Capitol Hill in an event hosted by Rep. Ben Ray Luján (D-N.Mex.) on Wednesday, April 11. Luján is a participant of the Congressional Maker Caucus, … Continue reading Making Space for Libraries on Capitol Hill during National Library Week


ALA logo

Spending Bill Includes Big Increases for Libraries

March 23, 2018

“We are thrilled that Congress has passed an FY2018 omnibus spending bill today that includes significant federal funding increases for our nation’s libraries! “One year ago, the White House proposed eliminating the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and slashed millions of dollars in federal funding for libraries. Twelve months and tireless advocacy efforts … Continue reading Spending Bill Includes Big Increases for Libraries



ALA Fund Libraries logo

Next Steps to Fund Libraries

March 7, 2018

The following excerpt originally appeared March 6 on District Dispatch, the blog of the American Library Association’s Washington Office. Read the full post at District Dispatch. The White House budget proposal for FY2019 recommends the elimination of most federal library funding. Though the budget proposal is concerning, Congress has the final say over the budget. Starting today, two … Continue reading Next Steps to Fund Libraries


ALA logo

ALA President Issues Statement on White House Budget

February 13, 2018

In response, American Library Association (ALA) President Jim Neal issued the following statement: “The administration’s FY2019 budget is out of touch with the real needs of Americans and the priorities of leaders in Congress who represent them. The president miscalculates the value of more than 120,000 libraries across America, just as he did in his … Continue reading ALA President Issues Statement on White House Budget



US Capitol, Washington DC

Senators Introduce Bipartisan Museum and Library Services Act Bill

December 26, 2017

The 2017 MLSA reauthorizes the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), showing congressional support for the federal agency. IMLS administers funding through the Library Services Technology Act (LSTA), the only federal program that exclusively covers services and funding for libraries. The LSTA provides more than $183 million for libraries through the Grants to States … Continue reading Senators Introduce Bipartisan Museum and Library Services Act Bill


Young patrons at the Ak-Chin Indian Community Library in Maricopa, Arizona, use tablets to code by connecting to library Wi-Fi. (Photo: Jeffrey Stoffer/Ak-Chin Indian Community Library)

Bringing Broadband to Tribal Lands

December 12, 2017

Access to high-speed broadband is vital to our nation’s economic well-being, and libraries are taking a leading role in providing it. For many underserved communities—particularly in rural areas—libraries provide the only access to broadband. Tribal lands in many states are both rural and underserved. The lack of high-speed broadband means for many tribal residents that … Continue reading Bringing Broadband to Tribal Lands


Rep. Raúl Labrador (R-Idaho) watches a demonstration of the SaveBB app from developers (from left) Kayla Leung, Rachel Lau, and Samantha Lau at the 2016 #HouseOfCode event cosponsored by ALA's Washington Office.

Libraries Fill the App Gap

October 17, 2017

‎ And many libraries are getting the help they need through the American Library Association’s (ALA) Libraries Ready to Code project. The project is expanding to ensure that libraries have the resources, capacity, and inspiration to embrace activities that promote computer science (CS) among our nation’s youth. Libraries can help encourage CS education by promoting the … Continue reading Libraries Fill the App Gap



Kathryn Matthew, director of the Institute for Museum and Library Services, speaks at the American Library Association’s 2017 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Chicago on June 24, 2017.Photo: Rebecca Lomax/American Libraries

Becoming Catalysts in a Changing World

June 24, 2017

In “Be a Catalyst: Harnessing Your Portfolio of Resources to Create Catalytic Change in Communities,” sponsored by the ALA Washington Office, Matthew provided advice on how libraries can learn about their communities in order to strengthen their connections to them, while Rip Rapson and Barbara Bartle provided context from national and regional funder points of view. … Continue reading Becoming Catalysts in a Changing World