Office for Diversity

American Library Association
50 E. Huron St.
Chicago, Illinois 60611
1-800-545-2433 ext. 5295
Fax: 312-280-3256
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The Office for Diversity serves as a clearinghouse for diversity resources and a focal point for administering and fostering diversity as a value and key action area of the Association. The Office serves the membership through its initiatives and programs, resource development, active consultations and training on diversity issues that impact the profession, the workplace, and information service delivery. Topics include such issues as recruitment and retention; personal and professional leadership; organizational change; team and capacity building; service strategies for diverse user populations; and effective interpersonal communications.

Initiatives & Projects

We currently administer the following major initiatives in support of our mission:

Member Groups & Meeting Schedules

The Council Committee on Diversity(COD) provides a forum to research, monitor, discuss, and address national diversity issues and trends impacting the library profession. Additionally, the Committee on Diversity provides ALA Council and ALA membership with information needed for the establishment of ALA policies, actions and initiatives related to national diversity issues and trends. Visit individual Committee and Subcommittee pages for more information and meeting schedules.

The Office for Diversity also serves as the liaison to the five ALA-Affiliated Associations of Ethnic Librarians.

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Popular Resources

The Office for Diversity is pleased to provide an ever-growing collection of resources to assist you in building diversity. If you have materials and resources to share, please email your suggestions to  Our major resource development areas are:



Michelle Harrell Washington
Director, Office for Diversity and Office for Literacy and Outreach Services
Responsible for oversight and administration of the Office's activities and budget; serves as staff liaison for the Committee on Diversity, ALA's Ethnic Caucuses and related groups; guides the Office in its efforts to provide active consultation, facilitation and training on diversity issues.  

Gwendolyn Prellwitz
Assistant Director Spectrum and Related Grants
Manages the Spectrum Scholarship program and related grants; supports the creation of new projects advancing the recruitment of a diverse library workforce; manages Spectrum communications, marketing, and data reporting.