Distinguished Service Award

This award honors an individual member of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) who has made significant contributions to, and an impact on, library service to children and/or ALSC.  The recipient receives $2,000 and an engraved pin at the ALSC Membership Meeting during ALA Annual Conference.

Current Distinguished Service Award Winner
Previous Distinguished Service Award Winners

  • Watch 2015 ALSC Distinguished Award winner Kathleen T. Horning give her acceptance speech at the 2015 Annual Conference (video, 9 min, 59 sec).
  • Watch 2016 ALSC Distinguished Award Winner Pat Scales give her acceptance speech from the 2016 Annual Conference (video 11 min, 43 sec).


  • The nominee should be an individual who has made significant contributions to, and an impact on, library services to children and to the Association for Library Service to Children.


  • The nominee and the individual making the nomination must be personal members of ALSC as well as ALA; organizational members are not eligible
  • Individuals nominated my be chosen from any facet of library services to children
  • The nominee may be a practicing librarian in a public or school library, a library or information science educator, a member of the library press, or an editor or other employee of a publishing house
  • The individual may be retired

How to nominate

The ALSC Distinguished Service Award committee is now accepting online nominations for the 2018 Distinguished Service Award! Nominations and supporting materials will be due by December 1, 2017. 

  • Please do not fill out and submit the nomination form until you have all the necessary materials to complete your submission. Some helpful hints:
    Reach out to and collaborate on the application with other colleagues who know your nominee.
    Learn your nominee's past ALA service by emailing the ALA Headquarters Library at library@ala.org. Mention in the email that you are a member of ALSC and need X person's history to complete a nomination for the ALSC DSA
  • If you would like to review the form before submitting electronically, you can use the DSA paper nomination form.
  • If you have any questions, please contact Mary Fellows, Distinguished Service Award Chair, at maryalsc@gmail.com


Start the 2018 Distinguished Service Award Nomination form now! – link to application

Announcement of the Winner

The 2017 Distinguished Service Award is Ellen Fader! Please visit our current distinguished service award winner page to view a press release featuring Ellen's accomplishments!

Committee resources

Distinguished Service Award Manual (PDF)
Distinguished Service Award Manual (Word)