Washington Office

ALA Appoints Mary Ghikas as Executive Director through January 2020

 CHICAGO - The American Library Association (ALA) Executive Board has appointed Mary Ghikas as executive director through January 2020, effective immediately. Ghikas has been serving as interim executive director since August 1, 2017, after the retirement of Keith Michael Fiels. She was most recently senior associate executive director of member programs and services.

ALA president welcomes FY2018 federal budget agreement, applauds library advocates

WASHINGTON, DC — Today Congress passed and the president signed an FY2018 budget deal that will likely include at least level funding for federal library programs at FY2017 levels. Below is the statement of ALA President Jim Neal:

ALA President announces 12-member cohort for newly launched ALA Policy Corps

American Library Association (ALA) President Jim Neal today announced the 12 library and information professionals selected to participate in the inaugural ALA Policy Corps, which aims to develop a cadre of experts with deep and sustained knowledge of national public policies in areas key to ALA’s strategic goals.

ALA Announces $500,000 in First-time Grants to Develop Coding Programs in Libraries

The American Library Association (ALA) today announced more than $500,000 in grants for 28 libraries in 21 states plus the District of Columbia (full list below) to design and implement coding programs for young people. The grants are part of ALA’s ongoing Libraries Ready to Code initiative sponsored by Google to promote computer science (CS) and computational thinking among youth. It is the first time ALA has dedicated funding for CS programs in libraries.

ALA opens application period for Libraries Ready to Code grants

WASHINGTON, DC — The American Library Association (ALA) has opened the application period for grants to develop public and school library programming that promotes computer science (CS) and computational thinking (CT) among youth.

Inclusive Internship Initiative to launch at Library of Congress

Washington, D.C. - This summer 50 teens from diverse backgrounds and from 25 states will participate in the first-ever national Inclusive Internship Initiative, set to kick off at 9:30 a.m. on June 16, in the Madison Building of the Library of Congress.

Kathi Kromer new head of ALA Washington Office

CHICAGO - After a nationwide search for the American Library Association’s (ALA) new Associate Executive Director (AED), Washington, D.C. Office, ALA has announced the appointment of Kathi Kromer to the role.   Kromer will join the ALA Washington Office team on Monday, June 5, 2017.

Prior to joining ALA, Kromer was with The Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Association for 11 years where she was their Vice President, Strategy and Outreach. 

Trump Administration’s budget using wrong math when it comes to libraries

WASHINGTON, DC — In response to the Trump Administration’s 2018 budget proposal released today, American Library Association (ALA) President Julie Todaro issued the following statement:
 
“The Administration’s budget is using the wrong math when it comes to libraries. 
 
“To those who say that the nation cannot afford federal library funding, the American Library Association, American businesses and millions of Americans say emphatically we cannot afford to be without it.

ALA condemns FCC vote to undermine net neutrality protections, vows to defend open internet

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, the American Library Association (ALA) condemned the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)’s vote on Thursday that begins undoing strong net neutrality protections. If the 2015 Open Internet Order is weakened, the FCC Chairman will undermine safeguards demanded by millions of Americans and affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to ensure equitable access to and distribution of online information and services for all.

ALA lauds major businesses united to fight for federal library funding

(Washington, DC) – The American Library Association hailed today’s unveiling of the Corporate Committee for Library Investment (CCLI), a group of more than two dozen leading information, software, publishing and other businesses as well as multiple national trade associations newly united to advocate for federal library funding. 
 
ALA President Julie Todaro praised CCLI, saying “It's thrilling to see such significant companies and associations across so many industries come together to fight