For immediate release | December 13, 2011

EBSCO awards five scholarships for librarians to attend ALA Midwinter

CHICAGO – In co-sponsorship with the American Library Association (ALA), EBSCO awarded five librarians $1,500 scholarships to attend the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Dallas, Jan. 20–24, 2012. As part of the application process, librarians were asked to write an essay on the topic: "If you could change anything about your current workplace or job responsibilities, how would you position them to meet future needs?"

The five librarians who were selected as winners are Jo Alcock, evidence-based researcher, Kenrick Library, Birmingham City University, Birmingham, UK; Angiah L. Davis, reference librarian, Robert W. Woodruff Library, Atlanta University Center, Atlanta; Liz M. Kirchhoff, adult services librarian, Barrington Area Library, Barrington, Ill.; Kathleen Lehman, head librarian, Physics Library, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Ark.; and Kirby McCurtis, youth services librarian, San Diego Public Library, San Diego.

The winners outlined creative approaches for change unique to their libraries. Their ideas included literacy outreach programs in partnership with human service organizations, school reading initiatives, social media networking and one-on-one librarian-to-patron consultations, with the common thread being stepping outside the library as “a physical building” to partner with and meet the needs of the community.

“If I could change my job in any way, I would strive to be more embedded in my community,” says Kirchhoff. “By being active participants in our community, we can provide convenient services where our patrons need them most.”

The applications were judged by a jury designated by ALA: jury chairman Julius C. Jefferson Jr., information research specialist, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.; David A. Brackus, librarian, Jefferies & Company Inc., Houston; Elizabeth Nelson, knowledge analyst, UOP LLC, Woodstock, Ill.; Tobi Oberman, head of circulation, Skokie Public Library, Skokie, Ill.; Dawn J. Zeig, library media specialist, Malcom S. Mackay School, Mahwah, N.J.

The five winning librarians will join EBSCO and ALA representatives for a breakfast honoring the scholarship recipients during the conference on Sunday, Jan. 22.

EBSCO is dedicated to supporting the professional development of librarians around the world and has a long tradition of co-sponsoring scholarships to ALA conferences, providing money to be used for conference registration, travel, and expenses. EBSCO will continue awarding scholarships in 2012 for the ALA Annual Conference, which will be held in Anaheim, Calif.

About ALA

The American Library Association (ALA) is a nonprofit professional organization of more than 65,000 librarians, library trustees, and other friends of libraries dedicated to providing and improving library services and promoting the public interest in a free and open information society:


Established in 1944, EBSCO is the world’s leading information agent providing consultative services and cutting-edge technology for managing and accessing quality content, including print and e-journals, e-packages, research databases, eBooks, and more. Now more than ever libraries and research organizations are looking for new ways to manage their collections more efficiently. EBSCO has developed the most comprehensive “e” discovery and management solutions, offering unparalleled integration to help librarians save time and money while empowering their users.

EBSCO serves clients in more than 200 countries through our 30 offices worldwide with more than 140 librarians on staff. To learn more about EBSCO’s products and services, visit


For more information, please contact:

Rossi Morris

Media Relations Coordinator

EBSCO Corporate Communications


Cheryl Malden

Program Officer

American Library Association