CHICAGO — The Library Instruction Round Table (LIRT) of the American Library Association has chosen Dr. Lesley S. J. Farmer, professor of library media at California State University Long Beach, as the 2015 recipient of the LIRT Librarian Recognition Award. The Librarian Recognition Award was created to recognize an individual’s contribution to the development, advancement and support of information literacy and instruction. Farmer was chosen as the 2015 winner based on her contributions at the international, national, state and local levels in support of information literacy and instruction.
Michael Saar, chair of the Recognition Award selection committee, noted Farmer’s wide range of influence, including her strong publication record and participation and leadership in a variety of committees, as determining factors in the committee’s selection of her as this year’s winner.
Farmer’s emphasis on the importance of information literacy in instruction has aided librarians at both the K-12 and university-level, beginning in 1981 at Virginia Commonwealth University and spanning through her most recent work as coordinator of the Teacher Librarian Services/Librarianship Program and chair of the Department for Advanced Studies in Education and Counseling at California State University Long Beach. She has provided training on teaching information literacy to librarians in the United Arab Emirates and has presented on information literacy-related topics internationally in numerous countries including France, Canada and Australia. She was instrumental in the development of the California Model School Library Standards and the AASL/ACRL information literacy online toolkit and is currently serving on the ACRL Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education Task Force. These are just a few of her many accomplishments.
Farmer commented on the personal importance of winning the Librarian Recognition Award, explaining “I have worked for twenty years in the area of information literacy and instruction, especially with an eye on gendered issues, so it was such an honor to be recognized for this long-term effort. This award enabled me to look back at this work, which reminded me of the extent of information literacy and its changes over the years. Yet the underlying ideas – and the need for information literacy – remain as vital as ever.” The LIRT Awards committee couldn’t agree more.
The Library Instruction Round Table was started in 1977 with the intent to bring together librarians who provide library instruction across all types of libraries -- academic, public, school, and special libraries. 2015 is the second year that the Library Recognition Award has been awarded. Dr. Farmer will be presented with a $1,000 cash prize and a plaque at the LIRT awards ceremony, scheduled for 5:30 - 6:30 p.m. on June 28, at ALA Annual in San Francisco. She will also receive a $500 travel stipend for attending ALA Annual.
Find out more about LIRT, its mission, and the awards at: http://www.ala.org/lirt/mission
LIRT Librarian Recognition Awards Committee:
Michael K. Saar, Lamar University (Chair)
Jacalyn Bryan, Saint Leo University
Paula C. Johnson, New Mexico State University