For immediate release | February 21, 2012

Make your mark: Vote in the 2012 ALA election

CHICAGO – The American Library Association is gearing up for its upcoming election.

For the fourth year in a row, the American Library Association is holding its election exclusively online.

Polls will open at 9 a.m. CDT on March 19, 2012 for the American Library Association’s annual election.

When the polls open, the ALA will notify voters by e-mail, providing them with their unique passcodes and information about how to vote online.

The polls close on Friday, April 27 at 11:59 p.m. CDT.

On May 4, the Election Committee will meet at the ALA offices to certify the election. Election results will be released following that meeting.

Although the election is being conducted online, there remains one exception. Members with disabilities and without Internet access may obtain a paper ballot by contacting ALA customer service at 1 (800) 545-2433, ext. 5. Those without Internet access at home or work can easily access the election site by visiting their local public (or in many instances academic or school) library.

“Voting is one of the most important things you do as a member,” said ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels. “The President represents all of us as members, whether doing hundreds of media interviews each year or helping to guide the association through financial opportunities and challenges. They are our spokespeople - and that of libraries around the country.”

Gina J. Millsap and Barbara K. Stripling are the candidates for the 2013-14 presidency of the American Library Association (ALA).

Millsap is the Chief Executive Officer of the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library in Topeka, Kan. She is nationally known for presenting on cutting edge issues, including 21st century librarianship, process improvement, the use of market segmentation to grow and develop library services and the changes necessary for libraries to thrive in the 21st century.

Millsap has been a continuous member of ALA since 1995 serving as the 2009-2010 president of the Library Leadership & Management Association (LLAMA). She has served on several committees within LLAMA. She also served on ALA’s Advocacy Coordinating Group, 2007-08 and as chair of the Elizabeth J. Futas Catalyst for Change Award Jury, 2002.

She served as president of the Iowa Library Association (2002) and has held leadership positions in the Kansas Library Association (Secretary 2007-2008), the Missouri Library Association (Secretary 1985-1986), the Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce, the Ames (Iowa) Chamber of Commerce, and the Ames Convention and Visitors Bureau. From 2004-2009, she participated in the American Bulgarian Library Exchange. She has been a Rotarian for 15 years and a United Way volunteer in both Ames and Topeka. Current community leadership includes serving on the United Way On-Grade Achievement Council and as the co-chair of Heartland Visioning, a community-wide strategic planning process for Topeka and Shawnee County.

Millsap’s honors include Library Journal Mover and Shaker (2007); Zonta Club, Topeka Chapter, honoree for International Women’s Day (2007); and the State of Iowa Governor’s Volunteer Award (2000).

She has a B.A. in library science from the University of Missouri (1976), and an M.A. in library science also from the University of Missouri (1977).

“ALA will be relevant to all generations of librarians by making value to its members its top priority,” Millsap said. “The bottom line is - to create a 21st century library we need 21st century librarians.”

Stripling recently assumed the position of assistant professor of practice at Syracuse University in Syracuse, N.Y. after serving as the director of School Library Services for the New York City Department of Education for seven years.

Stripling has been a member of ALA since 1977, serving as a member-at-large of ALACouncil from 1992-1996 and 1998-present. She also served on the ALA Executive Board (2001-2005). She chaired the American Libraries Advisory Committee (1995-1996) and served as a member of the ALA Policy Monitoring Committee, 2010-present, Intellectual Freedom Committee (2006-present), Conference Committee (2002-2005), Committee on Education (1998-2002), Nominating Committee (1999-2000).

She is past president (1996-1997) of the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) and has held numerous committee positions within AASL. She also served as a member and chair of the ALA-APA Certification Committee (2002-2007). Other ALA activities include work as co-chair of ALA President Molly Raphael’s initiative, Empowering Voices, 2010-present, and trustee of the Merritt Fund (2011-present).

Stripling was presented with the Retta Patrick Award by the Arkansas Library Association in 1989 and the Arkansas Association of Instructional Media named her Arkansas School Library Media Specialist of the Year in 1990.

Stripling received a B.A. in speech and drama from Stanford University (1968), an M.A. in Communication and Theatre from the University of Colorado (1974), an M.Ed. in Instructional Resources from the University of Arkansas (1991), an Ed.S. in Educational Administration from the University of Arkansas (2003), and a Doctorate of Professional Studies, Information Management from Syracuse University (2011).

“I am honored to be nominated to lead the American Library Association at this exciting time, when we are coming together as a library community to champion equitable access to information, intellectual freedom, lifelong learning and community engagement. Individually, we all have a passion for serving our communities through our libraries. Collectively, throughALA, we can translate that passion into a national voice. We can transform our libraries and empower all of our community members to discover their own opportunities to thrive.”

The American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with approximately 60,000 members. Its mission is to promote the highest quality library and information services and public access to information.

For more information on the election, call (800) 545-2433, ext. 5, or e-mail


Steve Zalusky