ACRL Awards Program

ACRL's awards recognize and honor the professional contributions and achievements of your peers. This special recognition by the Association of College and Research Libraries enhances the sense of personal growth and accomplishment of our members, provides our membership with role models, and strengthens the image of our membership in the eyes of employers, leadership, and the academic community as a whole. Made possible by generous corporate support, the annual presentation of our prestigious awards and grants to these deserving individuals and institutions enables ACRL to honor the very best in academic librarianship.

The ACRL Awards Process Implementation Task Force has completed its work and the ACRL Board of Directors approved the task force’s recommendations at their January 26, 2024 Virtual Board meeting. Included in the approved recommendations was the establishment of the ACRL Awards Coordinating Committee; lifting of the awards’ pause; ending cash awards; and aligning awards policies and procedures to ACRL’s Core Commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. You can read the full report and recommendations in the ACRL Board packet (Doc 17.1). These recommendations included that, during the 2024-2025 program year, each awards committee be charged with reviewing the description, selection criteria, and selection process for the award(s) it juries. An information session for awards stakeholders will be held on May 20, 2024 1:00 PM-2:00 PM CDT (Zoom registration).

Awards recognize impact.

You don't need to be a formal leader to affect change and make a positive impact in your library and on your campus community. In this video, 2019 Academic/Research Librarian of the Year Kaetrena Davis Kendrick shares her experience receiving the award.

Who inspires you at your library? Please consider nominating those who have influenced your thinking, your practice, and your growth as an academic or research library worker. We ask you to remember the significant achievements of those we've honored in the past and recognize the contributions of your peers with your nominations.

2021 Award Recipients


ACRL congratulates our 2021 award recipients! Visit our award recipient page to learn more about these outstanding members of the academic and research library community.

Achievement and Distinguished Service Awards

Sponsored by GOBI Library Solutions from EBSCO

Recognizes an outstanding member of the library profession who has made a significant national or international contribution to academic or research librarianship and library development.

Sponsored by GOBI Library Solutions from EBSCO

Recognizes the outstanding accomplishments of the librarians and library staff of a community college, college, and university library each year.

Jointly sponsored by ACRL and Core

Recognizes outstanding accomplishments in the areas of library automation or library management as well as contributions (including risk taking) toward the improvement of library services or to library development or rese

Sponsored by SCELC

Recognizes college librarians and staff who demonstrate innovation in their library.

Sponsored by EBSCO Information Services

Recognizes significant achievement in the area of community college programs.

Sponsored by EBSCO Information Services

Recognizes significant achievement in the areas of community college leadership.

Sponsored by Routledge/Taylor & Francis

Honors any individual ACRL member working in the field of, or contributing to the success of, distance learning librarianship or related library service in higher education.

Sponsored by the American Psychological Association

Honors a distinguished academic librarian who has made an outstanding contribution as an education and/or behavioral sciences librarian through accomplishments and service to the profession.

Sponsored by the ACRL Instruction Section

Recognizes an individual librarian who has made an especially significant contribution to the advancement of instruction in a college or research library environment.

Sponsored by EBSCO Information Services

Recognizes a project that demonstrates creative, innovative, or unique approaches to information literacy instruction or programming.

Sponsored by SAGE-CQ Press

Recognizes an academic or law librarian who, through research, service to the profession, or other creative activity, makes distinguished contributions to bibliography and information service in law or political science.

This award is currently on hold, pending sponsorship approval.

Recognizes creative, innovative approaches to solving problems or improving products and services in science and technology librarianship.

Sponsored by Library Juice Academy

Recognizes librarians, archivists or curators whose contributions to providing professional development opportunities for librarians have been especially noteworthy or influential.

Sponsored by Duke University Press

Honors a distinguished academic librarian who has made outstanding contributions to women and gender studies through accomplishments and service to the profession.

Sponsored by Duke University Press

Honors a distinguished academic librarian who have made significant one-time contributions to women and gender studies through accomplishments and service to the profession.

Publication/Research Awards and Grants

Funded by an endowment from Katharine Kyes Leab and Daniel J. Leab, editors of American Book Prices Current

Recognizes excellence in the publication of catalogues and brochures that accompany exhibitions of library and archival materials, as well as for el

Sponsored by Carrick Enterprises

Recognizes an outstanding publication related to instruction in a library environment published in the preceding two years.

Funded by an endowment created through the Eunice Rockwood Oberly Memorial Fund

Given in odd-numbered years for the best English-language bibliography in the field of agriculture or a related science.

Note: The 2021 grant is temporarily on hold due to funding suspension from the sponsor.

Supports research in European studies with an emphasis on librarianship, the book trade, resource documentation and similar information-science related topics. 2,500 E

*Please note that monetary award amounts are subject to change without notice and are contingent upon donor funding supplied at the time the award is presented. Questions about awards should be directed to the committee chairperson or to Brian Lim at

Information is also available about starting new awards.