For immediate release | January 28, 2021

American Library Association announces 2021 Annual Meeting will be Virtual

CHICAGO — The American Library Association’s Executive Board announced today that the 2021 ALA Annual Conference & Exhibition scheduled for June 23-29 in Chicago will take place virtually.

“We hoped that by this summer, it would be safe to meet again in person. However, that is clearly not the case. Despite the promise of vaccines, the pandemic continues to devastate our country. For the safety of everyone involved, we will be moving our Annual Conference to a virtual format,” said Julius C. Jefferson, Jr., ALA president.

Jefferson continued: “Given the success of our just-wrapped virtual Midwinter meeting, I am confident that Annual will be just as dynamic, engaging and inspiring. As always, we will have big name speakers, a full online exhibit floor, and more events and opportunities to network, learn and grow that I know participants will love.”

ALA Annual attracts some of today’s most highly regarded keynoters and authors, and speakers will be announced early this spring along with additional information on programs, sessions, meetings, and exhibits. Registration will open March 1, 2021, and advance rates end April 16. In the coming weeks, presenters who submitted program proposals will be contacted by ALA representatives with more information about next steps for the online format.

“COVID-19 has profoundly changed the library world – and, of course, the wider world around us. But I’m buoyed by the incredible determination, resilience and community-building I’ve seen in the past year,” ALA Executive Director Tracie D. Hall said. “As a body, ALA has proven nimble and unflappable in the face of adversity and we will continue to prioritize safety, even as we strive to innovate the digital conference experience to widen attendance and deepen engagement well after this period. Based on the incredible response that Virtual Midwinter 2021 received, we look forward to a dynamic Annual Conference program guaranteed to illuminate, inform and inspire.”

About the American Library Association

ALA is the foremost national organization providing resources to inspire library and information professionals to transform their communities through essential programs and services. For more than 140 years, ALA has been the trusted voice of libraries, advocating for the profession and the library’s role in enhancing learning and ensuring access to information for all. For more information, visit


Stephanie Hlywak


American Library Association

Communications and Marketing Office

(312) 280-5042