South Carolina Library Association wins ALA President’s Award for Advocacy, sponsored by ALTAFF

For Immediate Release
Tue, 04/17/2012

Contact:

Jillian Kalonick
Marketing / Public Relations
United for Libraries (United)
800-545-2433 ext.2160
jkalonick@ala.org

PHILADELPHIA —  The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations (ALTAFF), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), announces, in cooperation with ALA President Molly Raphael and ALA President-Elect Maureen Sullivan, that the South Carolina Library Association (SCLA) is the recipient of the 2012 ALA Presidential Award for Advocacy, sponsored by ALTAFF.

“The South Carolina Library Association is very pleased to win this recognition,” said Adam Haigh, immediate past president of the South Carolina Library Association. “We consider Friends and Trustees to be extremely important components to our advocacy efforts, and this monetary award will allow us to expand our services to them.”

In 2010, SCLA joined forces with the South Carolina Association of School Librarians, the South Carolina State Library and other state library agencies to create a library data day that would develop a meaningful demonstration of the importance of libraries for those who generate funding through their legislative authority. A “Day in the Life of South Carolina Libraries” handout was created, which resulted from a survey and photographic documentation of library activities over a single day in all types of libraries across the state.

When South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford vetoed $4,653,933 in state aid to public libraries and $1,172,758 in stimulus funds to public libraries, stating that “fully funding local libraries does not rise to the level of many of our other core services such as law enforcement and health care,” librarians and library advocates went to work contacting their legislators via Capwiz. Due to these efforts and a social media campaign, in less than one week the South Carolina House of Representatives voted to override the governor’s vetoes, which would have resulted in a tremendous cut to South Carolina public library funding.

The ALA President’s Award for Advocacy, sponsored by ALTAFF, includes $1,000 to the winning state campaign for the further development of citizens across the state as advocates. The South Carolina Library Association will be recognized at the Opening General Session of the 2012 ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim, Calif.

The deadline for applications for the 2013 award will be March 15, 2013. The winning statewide effort must have been conducted during 2011 or 2012 and will be determined based on use of Capwiz (or a similar electronic campaign) as a way for all library supporters to contact state legislators en masse, the level of success achieved (whether reducing the size of a cut, or increasing funds for state libraries) and the level of engagement by citizen supporters of libraries. For more information on taking action for libraries in your state using Capwiz, visit www.ala.org/offices/cro/legislationandadvocacy/takeactionlibraries.

ALTAFF is a division of the American Library Association that supports citizens who govern, promote, advocate, and fundraise for libraries. ALTAFF brings together library Trustees, advocates, Friends, and Foundations into a partnership that creates a powerful force for libraries in the 21st century. For more information, visit www.ala.org/altaff, or contact Jillian Kalonick at (312) 280-2161 or jkalonick@ala.org.

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