Distinguished Service Award

This award honors an individual member of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) who has made significant contributions to, and an impact on, library service to children and/or ALSC.  The recipient receives $2,000 and an engraved pin at the ALSC Membership Meeting during ALA Annual Conference.

Current Distinguished Service Award Winner
Previous Distinguished Service Award Winners

  • Watch 2022 Distinguished Service Award winner, Betsy Diamant-Cohen, deliver her acceptance speech at the 2022 ALA Annual Conference (video, 16 min, 35 sec).
  • Watch 2021 Distinguished Service Award winner, Liz McChesney, giver her acceptance speech at the 2021 virtual ALSC Membership Meeting (video, 13 min, 19 sec).
  • Watch 2020 Distinguished Service Award winner, Dr. Claudette McLinn, giver her acceptance speech at the 2020 virtual ALSC Membership Meeting (video, 8 min, 22 sec).
  • Watch 2019 ALSC Distinguished Service Award winner Maria B. Salvadore give her acceptance speech at the 2019 Annual Conference (video, 10 min, 27 sec).
  • Watch 2017 ALSC Distinguished Service Award winner Ellen Fader give her acceptance speech at the 2017 Annual Conference (video, 9 min, 43 sec).
  • Watch 2016 ALSC Distinguished Service Award Winner Pat Scales give her acceptance speech from the 2016 Annual Conference (video 11 min, 43 sec).

Committee resources

Distinguished Service Award Manual (PDF)
Distinguished Service Award Manual (Word)

How to nominate

The ALSC Professional Recognition and Scholarships Committee is currently accepting online nominations for the 2024 Distinguished Service Award! Nominations and supporting materials are due December 23, 2023.

  • Nomination form found here.
  • Please do not fill out and submit the nomination form until you have all the necessary materials to complete your submission.
  • If you have questions about the fellowship please contact the co-chairs of the Professional Recognition and Scholarships Committee Elizabeth Burns (eburns@njstatelib.org) and Mary Schreiber (schreiberalsc@gmail.com). 

Award Criteria


  • The nominee should be an individual who has made significant contributions to, and an impact on, library services to children and to the Association for Library Service to Children.


  • The nominee and the individual making the nomination must be personal members of ALSC as well as ALA; organizational members are not eligible
  • Individuals nominated my be chosen from any facet of library services to children
  • The nominee may be a practicing librarian in a public or school library, a library or information science educator, a member of the library press, or an editor or other employee of a publishing house
  • The individual may be retired