ALA Council approves new Lemony Snicket Prize for Noble Librarians Faced with Adversity

For Immediate Release
Wed, 01/29/2014

Contact:

Nanette Perez
Program Officer
Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF)
nperez@ala.org

CHICAGO — The American Library Association (ALA) Council, at a Tuesday session during the ALA Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits, approved the new Lemony Snicket Prize for Noble Librarians Faced with Adversity.

The award, which ALA intends to present at its Annual Conference in Las Vegas, recognizes a librarian who “has faced adversity with integrity and dignity intact.” It will be given annually to a deserving librarian. If a suitable candidate is not found, the award will not be presented that year.

The $3,000 prize will be given from Snicket’s “disreputable gains, along with an odd, symbolic object from his private stash, as well as a certificate, which may or may not be suitable for framing.”

Lemony Snicket is the pen name of American novelist Daniel Handler, who has written several highly acclaimed children’s books. The books often feature the author appearing as a fictional character, a writer falsely accused of crimes and sought by his enemies as well as the police.

Snicket himself believes that, in much the same spirit, librarians have suffered enough. Therefore, he has established the annual prize honoring a librarian who has overcome adversity.

According to Snicket, it is his hope that, “The Snicket Prize will remind readers everywhere of the joyous importance of librarians and the trouble that is all too frequently unleashed upon them.”

About his sponsorship of the award, Snicket said, "This seems like a better way to channel money to librarians than my previous strategy, which was incurring exorbitant late fees."

Lemony Snicket’s latest book, “File under: 13 Suspicious Incidents,”published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, will be released on April 1, 2014.

The award jury will consist of five people: a chair and four jury members. The members of the jury will consist of ALA members with at least one member from any of the youth divisions (ALSC, AASL, YALSA) and at least one member from the Intellectual Freedom Committee or the Intellectual Freedom Round Table.

The nominee must be a librarian. The deadline for candidates to be nominated for the first year is May 1. In subsequent years, the deadline will be Dec. 1.  

The following information must be addressed in the application:

  • A narrative describing the adverse incident the librarian faced and a description of their response, result and resources utilized;
  • Name and contact information;
  • If applicable, name and contact information of the nominator
  • Other supporting documentation, if applicable.

To find out more information about the award, including how to nominate candidates, visit www.ala.org/awardsgrants/lemony-snicket.