For immediate release | February 1, 2011

Miller, Wethern receive YALSA’s 2011 Baker & Taylor Conference Grants

CHICAGO — The Baker & Taylor Award Committee of the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), awarded the 2011 Baker & Taylor/YALSA Conference Grants to Yvonne Miller and Sarah Wethern. Each receives up to $1,000 to attend the ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans this summer.

The Baker & Taylor Conference Grant is awarded for first-time attendance at an Annual Conference. The recipients must be members of YALSA and must have between one and 10 years experience working with teenagers.

Yvonne Miller has been a teacher/librarian at Sagewood Middle School in Parker, Colo. since 2004. In addition to making her library a welcoming and supportive space within the school, she has worked hard to improve the technological and informational literacy of both students and teachers. She successfully collaborates with public libraries and other agencies to enhance all services for teens and is active in many professional and educational associations, using them to further her knowledge to aid her endeavors in her school. Her district’s library media coordinator says that, “A librarian who is more responsible, more effective or more responsive to the needs of her staff and students would be difficult to find. Yvonne definitely has the ‘right stuff.'”

“Thank you, thank you for selecting me!” Miller said. “There are many librarians deserving of this award, and I'm so honored to be the one chosen. The opportunity to attend ALA and learn from, and network with, so many great librarians will be amazing. I'm excited and look forward to sharing with my staff, students and fellow librarians!”

Sarah Wethern is teen services librarian for the Pueblo City-County (Colo.) Library District, where she has been since early 2009. In her short time there, she has created numerous partnerships with schools, outside youth organizations and within her own library, from which many creative programs have sprung. She runs a successful teen advisory group and has created programming running the gamut from video gaming to crafts to book clubs to virtual author visits. Her supervisor states that “I have seen Sarah exhibit fresh thinking, implement new ideas and interact in numerous professional activities.”

"Thank you Baker & Taylor and YALSA for this wonderful opportunity! I look forward to meeting library professionals and having a whole new field of experiences open up to me,” Wethern said. “YALSA does so many incredible things, I know by attending this conference I will gain new skills to give back to the organization. I am looking forward to fun and challenges in New Orleans.”

The YALSA Baker & Taylor Award Committee members are: Kenneth Petrilli, chair, New Rochelle (N.Y.) Public Library; Louisa Marie Storer, New York Public Library; Rachel McDonald, King County Library System, Auburn (Wash.) Library; Amy E. Sears, Teaneck (N.J.) Public Library; and Kathy Watson, Eastern Kentucky University, Richmond.

Applications for the 2012 Baker and Taylor grant can be found at Applications are due Dec. 1.

For more than 50 years, YALSA has been the world leader in selecting books, videos and audio books for teens. For more information about YALSA or for lists of recommended reading, viewing and listening, go to, or contact the YALSA office by phone, (800) 545-2433, ext. 4390, or e-mail,


Stephanie Kuenn