American Library Association presents 2011 James Madison Award to Patrice McDermott

For Immediate Release
Wed, 03/16/2011


Jennifer Terry

WASHINGTON, D.C. – American Library Association (ALA) President Roberta Stevens today awarded the 2011 James Madison Award to Patrice McDermott, director of, during the 13th annual National Freedom of Information Day Conference celebration at the Knight Conference Center at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. 

McDermott’s commitment to vigilantly defending our freedoms has included many accomplishments over the years.  Most recently, while at, Patrice led an independent audit of federal agency open government plans. 

Prior to that, McDermott worked as the senior information policy analyst for OMB Watch, a nonprofit research, educational and advocacy organization whose goals include promoting public access to government information and encouraging broad public participation in government decision-making to promote a more open and accountable government. 

McDermott also previously served as deputy director of the ALA Office of Government Relations, where she led the office’s work on government information and privacy policy and e-government policy issues, and as the assistant director of the Office for Intellectual Freedom of the American Library Association in Chicago. 

During the ceremony, Stevens highlighted McDermott’s impact on ALA. 

“She joined the ALA Office of Government Relations just days after 9-11 and was a tremendous leader within our community – and for all of us here today – in the struggle to bring balance to the USA PATRIOT Act and the many related and very challenging issues on surveillance and privacy,” Stevens said. 

Stevens’ complete remarks can be viewed here (PDF).