ACRL Awards Program

ACRL congratulates our 2021 award recipients.

Check them out!

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.

ACRL's Awards program will be on hold for the 2021-2022 award season, during which time nominations will not be accepted or juried and no recipients will be chosen for any ACRL awards. For more information, please contact Chase Ollis.


Browse Awards, Grants, and Scholarships:


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.


Achievement and Distinguished Service Awards

Link to Academic/Research Librarian of the Year Award
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.

Link to Excellence in Academic Libraries Awards
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.

Links to Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award
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 research.

Links to CLS Innovation in College Librarianship Award
Sponsored by SCELC

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

Links to CJCLS EBSCO Community College Learning Resources Program Award
Sponsored by EBSCO Information Services

Recognizes significant achievement in the area of community college programs.

Links to CJCLS EBSCO Community College Learning Resources Leadership Award
Sponsored by EBSCO Information Services

Recognizes significant achievement in the areas of community college leadership.

Links to Routledge Distance Learning Librarianship Conference Sponsorship Award
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.

Links to EBSS Distinguished Education and Behavioral Sciences Librarian Award
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.

Links to Miriam Dudley Instruction Librarian Award
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.

Links to Instruction Section Innovation Award
Sponsored by EBSCO Information Services

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

Links to PPIRS Marta Lange/SAGE-CQ Press Award
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.

Links to STS Innovation in Science and Technology Librarianship Award
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.

Links to ULS Outstanding Professional Development Award
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.

Links to WGSS Career Achievement in Women & Gender Studies Librarianship Award
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.

Links to WGSS Significant Achievement in Women & Gender Studies Librarianship Award
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 Awards

Links to Katharine Kyes Leab and Daniel J. Leab American Book Prices Current Exhibition Catalogue Awards
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 electronic exhibitions of such materials.

Links to Ilene F. Rockman Instruction Publication of the Year Award
Sponsored by Carrick Enterprises

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

Links to Oberly Award for Bibliography in the Agricultural or Natural Sciences
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.


Research Awards and Grants

Links to Academic Library Impact Research Grants
Note: As of spring 2020, this program has been suspended. The grants support new research to demonstrate and communicate library contributions to student learning and success. Each grant is worth up to $3000 and may cover research expenses such as personnel, travel, tools, or technology services.

Links to ESS De Gruyter European Librarianship Study Grant
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 Euro donated by the De Gruyter Foundation to cover travel to and from Europe and transportation, room, and board in Europe, for up to thirty (30) consecutive days.

Links to Scholarly Communications Research Grants
Note: As of fall 2020, this program has been suspended. The grants support new research that will contribute to more inclusive systems of scholarly communications. Each grant is worth up to $5000 and may cover research expenses such as personnel, travel, tools, or technology services.


2021 Award Recipients

Collage of ACRL 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.


*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 Chase Ollis at collis@ala.org.

Information is also available about starting new awards.