Kate Walker, a librarian at the Anderson County (S.C.) Library System, won the 2011 Why I’m a YALSA Member contest. Walker wins a free year of YALSA membership and an e-reader for her essay. Jennifer Hopwood, who tweeted her answer, and Kathryn Bradley, who wrote an essay, each won a box of books as runners up.
“When you become a member of YALSA, you gain access to a group of tremendously intelligent, enthusiastic, and dedicated individuals who believe in the power of librarianship and the power of teens,” said Walker. “I am super excited about my prize! ALA/YALSA renewals can really add up, so I am very grateful for a free year of membership. I cannot wait to use the e-reader with my teens in all kinds of fun and innovative ways.”
YALSA members were invited to write a short essay, send out a tweet using hashtag #whyyalsa or create a short video, all explaining why they were YALSA members. YALSA’s Division and Membership Promotion committee selected the winners from a pool of more than 25 entries.
In her essay, Walker wrote:
This is easy! I am a member of YALSA because of the awesome people and the incredible information I receive on a daily basis through this groovy organization! Teen librarians oftentimes work alone within their libraries. With YALSA, it’s like a family reunion every time I participate with the lists, take an online class, webinar, or attend events at conferences. YALSA is there for me 24/7 and allows me to more in my job and do it better!
Hopwood tweeted her entry:
Y outh advocating A wesome programming ideas L eading the way S ensational resources A mazing people!#whyyalsa
Bradley also chose an essay, writing:
Our heroine walked into the crowded youth services area, and knew that she couldn’t do it all alone. “I need to stay on top of everything” she said warily. “I need to know the newest books, best programming ideas, and what the teens really want in their library.” She rushed to her desk. “YALSA can help me! With its wonderful ideas and networking opportunities I’m sure I can get all I need to make this the best youth services area in the city!” That day our heroine felt she got all the information she need to become a better librarian.