Distinguished Service Award (Inactive)


The Distinguished Service Award has been transformed into the Distinguished Service Award & Scholarship Fund. Click here to learn more and invest in the future of school librarianship.


The Distinguished Service Award recognizes an individual member of the library profession who has, over a significant period of time, made an outstanding national contribution to school librarianship and school library development.


Nominators and nominees must be personal members of ALA/AASL.


Individuals nominated should have demonstrated achievements in one or more of the following areas:

  1. Service and visionary leadership to the organized profession through AASL and related organizations. 

  2. Publication of a body of scholarly and/or theoretical writing contributing to school library development.

  3. Influencing the planning and development of an exemplary school library through legislative efforts, implementation of standards based on the National School Library Standards for Learners, School Libraries and School Librarians, or the teaching and/or mentoring of future school library professionals.

  4. Developing and sustaining a school library or body of practice of such depth and scope as to warrant special recognition.

Download Criteria & Rating Sheets pdf icon

Download Copy of Application 

* Please note: This downloadable version is for informational purposes only. This award is currently inactive and information on this page is intended for reference and historical purposes. 


Allison Cline email icon
Deputy Executive Director


2020    Mona Kerby

"I’m honored to receive this award because it means that in a small way, I join the school library leaders who’ve helped me—unknowingly—over my career. My mission is to help librarians develop and use quality collections that enrich students love of reading and learning—forever."


2019    Joyce Valenza

2018    Award not sponsored

2017    Lesley Farmer

2016    Hilda Weisburg

2015    Ann M. Martin

2014    Debra ​Kachel

2013    Keith Curry Lance

2012    Sharon Coatney

2011    Dr. Violet H. Harada

2010    Marcia A. Mardis

2009    No Recipient

2008    Nancy P. Zimmerman

2007    No Recipient

2006    Michael Eisenberg

2005    Rebecca Bingham

2004    M. Ellen Jay

2003    No Recipient

2002    David Loerstcher

2001    Hilda L. Jay

2000    Carol Colier Kuhlthau

1999    Jaqueline C. Mancall

1998    Bernice L. Yesner

1997    Blanche E. Woolls

1996    Ken Haycock

1995    Judith M. Pitts

1994    Lucille Cole Thomas

1993    Marilyn L. Miller

1992    Dianne McAfee Hopkins

1991    Barbara Spriesterbach

1990    Ruth Bell

1989    Virgina H. Mathews

1988    Margaret I. Rufsvold

1987    Alice Lohrer

1986    Margaret Hayes Grazier

1985    Frances S. Hatfield

1984    Rheta A. Clark

1983    Rachel Wingfield DeAngelo

1982    D. Phillip Baker

1981    Mary Helen Mahar

1980    Mary V. Gaver

1979    Frances E. Henne

1978    Jean E. Lowrie