Valerie Jarrett announced as keynote speaker for PLA Member Welcome Breakfast at ALA Annual Conference

For Immediate Release
Wed, 03/22/2017


Laurence Deutsch

Manager, Communications

Public Library Association (PLA)

The Public Library Association (PLA), a division of the American Library Association, is proud to welcome Valerie B. Jarrett, former director of the Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs under U.S. President Barack Obama , as the featured speaker at its Member Welcome Breakfast. PLA President Felton Thomas, Jr. will host this exclusive event, taking place at the 2017 ALA Annual Conference from 8:30 to 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 24. 

About Valerie B. Jarrett

Valerie B. Jarrett was the longest serving Senior Advisor to President Barack Obama. She oversaw the Offices of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs and Chaired the White House Council on Women and Girls.

Ms. Jarrett has worked throughout her tenure at the White House to mobilize elected officials, business and community leaders, and diverse groups of advocates. She led the Obama Administration’s efforts to expand and strengthen access to the middle class, and boost American businesses and our economy. She championed the creation of equality and opportunity for all Americans, and economically and politically empowering women in the United States and around the world. She oversaw the Administration’s advocacy for workplace policies that empower working families, including equal pay, raising the minimum wage, paid leave, paid sick days, workplace flexibility, and affordable childcare, and led the campaigns to reform our criminal justice system, end sexual assault, and reduce gun violence.

Ms. Jarrett has a background in both the public and private sectors. She served as the Chief Executive Officer of The Habitat Company in Chicago, Chairman of the Chicago Transit Board, Commissioner of Planning and Development, and Deputy Chief of Staff for Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley. She also served as the director of numerous corporate and not-for-profit boards including Chairman of the Board of the Chicago Stock Exchange, Chairman of the University of Chicago Medical Center Board of Trustees, and Director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. Ms. Jarrett has also received numerous awards and honorary degr ees, including TIME’s “100 Most Influential People.”

Jarrett received her B.A. from Stanford University in 1978 and her J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School in 1981.


This event is complimentary to PLA members, but a ticket is required for admittance. PLA members can receive a complimentary ticket by selecting the PLA Member Welcome Breakfast (event code: PLA1) as a ticketed event during their initial ALA Annual Conference registration or by adding it later using the unique link found in their registration email confirmation. Additional information regarding ticketed events at ALA Annual can be found on the conference website.

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