ACRL Diversity Alliance launches

Mary Ellen Davis
Executive Director
ACRL Diversity Alliance
mdavis@ala.org

CHICAGO – The Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) is pleased to announce the launch of the ACRL Diversity Alliance. Approved by the ACRL Board of Directors at the 2016 ALA Annual Conference in Orlando, Florida, the ACRL Diversity Alliance program unites academic libraries who share a commitment to increase the hiring pipeline of qualified, talented individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups.

By thinking bigger and broader, across all academic libraries, the alliance will introduce and welcome to the job market underrepresented racial and ethnic groups with work experiences that advance academic/research libraries. The commitment of each library leader to create one or more resident positions will increase the numbers of opportunities for professionally underrepresented racial and ethnic groups to gain the knowledge, skills and competencies to thrive in an academic context.

“Diversity is a core organizational value in ACRL’s Plan for Excellence,” said ACRL President Irene M.H. Herold of the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. “This initiative aligns with the new goal area of New Roles and Changing Landscapes and the goal area of Value of Academic Libraries objective to support libraries in advancing issues of equity, access, diversity, and inclusion. With the launch of the ACRL Diversity Alliance, we put further work into action to advance our goals.”

Participation in the ACRL Diversity Alliance requires a deep commitment on the part of library leaders to open doors, share their networks and connect people at conferences, to facilitate deeper understanding of the profession and prepare them for participating in wider higher education community and for success in scholarship and professional service and leadership. In addition to the network of library leaders, residents will have access to a cohort/network that allows for sharing of ideas, resources and best practices.

“This Alliance creates a national effort to measurably impact the diversity of all academic and college library organizations,” added Jon Cawthorne, chair of the ACRL Diversity Alliance Task Force and dean of libraries at West Virginia University. “I am grateful to the ACRL Board, my colleagues, and library leaders across the country for their commitment, involvement, and support for the Alliance. Now the work begins!”

The ACRL Diversity Alliance grew out of an initiative led by founding members American University, the University of Iowa, Virginia Tech, and West Virginia University.

Complete details on the ACRL Diversity Alliance, including information on how libraries may join the alliance, are available on the ACRL website.

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The Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) is the higher education association for librarians. Representing more than 11,000 academic and research librarians and interested individuals, ACRL (a division of the American Library Association) develops programs, products and services to help academic and research librarians learn, innovate and lead within the academic community. Founded in 1940, ACRL is committed to advancing learning and transforming scholarship. ACRL is on the Web at acrl.org, Facebook at facebook.com/ala.acrl and Twitter at @ala_acrl.

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