Contact: Wendy Prellwitz
Program Officer
For Immediate Release
April 30, 2004

ALA announces fifth Spectrum Leadership Institute


CHICAGO - The American Library Association (ALA) will hold its fifth Spectrum Leadership Institute in Orlando, Fla., June 23-25, at the University of Central Florida. The Institute, a major component of the Spectrum Initiative, supplements the $5,000 annual Spectrum Scholarships with a two and a half day intensive training and professional development conference for Spectrum Scholars who have completed a full year of graduate study in library and information science.

The Institute is designed to empower scholars to draw on a rich collective body of experience; to attain and retain positions of leadership; and to ensure the quality and validity of library and information science for the increasingly diverse population of users.

The Institute will feature speakers and presenters from an array of professional interests and cultural backgrounds. Their presentations and sessions, combined with participation in discussion and workgroups, form a curriculum proven to be a vital tool in instilling leadership skills in the scholars as they embark on their library careers. Topics include diversity awareness, cross-cultural leadership skills, professional development, career options and more.

Attendees at the Annual Conference are encouraged to help welcome the Spectrum Scholars to ALA and the profession by taking a moment to speak with them.  Attending scholars past and present will be identifiable by a red Spectrum ribbon. 

Established in 1997, the Spectrum Initiative is ALA's national diversity and recruitment effort designed to address the specific issue of underrepresentation of ethnic librarians within the profession while serving as a model for ways to bring attention to larger diversity issues in the future.   The current cohort of Spectrum Scholars strengthens the diversity of librarianship through their varied geographical, ethnic, cultural and individual backgrounds. To learn more about the Spectrum Initiative and its efforts to recruit, train and retain library leaders of color, visit

For more information about the Institute, contact Wendy Prellwitz, 1-800-545-2433 ext. 5048, email