For immediate release | February 11, 2014

YALSA honors four members with YALSA Writing Award

CHICAGO — The Young Adult Library Services Association, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), named the winners of its YALSA Writing Award, with members winning prizes in four categories:

“YALSA is thrilled to announce this year's winners of the YALSA Writing Award. The winning articles cover topics ranging from innovative young adult programming, to advocacy, to insightful reflections about the workings of young adult literature.” said Shannon Peterson, YALSA president. “Each winner is recognized for her thoughtful presentation and skilled writing that won over editors and our jury members. We hope these achievements will encourage all members of YALSA to read – and to write for – YALSA in the coming year.”

The winners for the journals will each receive $500, due to the more extensive nature of their work. The winners for the blog posts will each receive $200. All winners will receive a plaque and be recognized at YALSA’s Membership Meeting at the ALA Annual Conference this summer in Las Vegas. The award is supported through funds donated to Friends of YALSA. To learn more, or to make a donation, visit

The YALSA Writing Award recognizes the contribution of YALSA members who have written an article or blog post for the association’s journals or blogs that is timely, original, relevant to YALSA members and well-written. Each year, YALSA’s blog managers and journal editors select a shortlist of up to five articles or posts that meet award criteria to submit to the YALSA Writing Award Jury. Items are selected based on the following criteria: applicability to a variety of library settings, originality of ideas, timeliness, relevance to young adult librarianship, persuasiveness of arguments, quality of writing, clarity of presentation and contribution to the YALSA membership. The articles must address young adult library services or information regarding young adults that can be applied usefully to young adult library services.

The 2014 YALSA Writing Award Jury members are Cathryn M. Mercier, chair, director of the Center for the Study of Children’s Literature at Simmons College, Boston; Jennifer Brannen, Young Adult Services, Durham County Library, South Regional, Durham, N.C.; Elizabeth Burns, Youth Services Consultant for the New Jersey State Library Talking Book and Braille Center, Trenton, N.J.; David Wang, Young Adult Librarian, Corona & Queensboro Hill branches of the Queens Library System, New York.

For more than 50 years, YALSA has worked to build the capacity of libraries and librarians to engage, serve and empower teens. For more information about YALSA or to access national guidelines and other resources go to, or contact the YALSA office by phone, (800) 545-2433, ext. 4390, or e-mail,


Jaclyn Finneke

Communications Manager

Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA)