For immediate release | July 12, 2011

Northern California APALA and REFORMA members support Spectrum Presidential Initiative

CHICAGO — Librarians and library supporters in Northern California came together to raise more than $1,000 for the Spectrum Presidential Initiative through a recent fundraiser and mixer at the Redwood City Public Library. Organized by Sandy Wee, president of the Asian Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA), and Maria Kramer, president of the National Association to Promote Library & Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking (REFORMA), the fundraiser brought together REFORMA and APALA members from a 100-mile radius north and south of the Redwood City Public Library.

ALA President Molly Raphael, Immediate Past President Roberta Stevens, ALA President-Elect Maureen Sullivan and ALA Past President Dr. Betty J. Turock, chair of the initiative, continue the Spectrum Presidential Initiative as a special campaign to raise $1 million for the Spectrum Scholarship Program. Through this initiative, ALA aims to meet the critical needs of supporting master’s-level scholarships, providing two $25,000 doctoral scholarships, increasing the Spectrum Endowment to ensure the program’s future and developing special programs for recruitment and career development. This contribution from REFORMA and APALA librarians in Northern California will allow ALA to continue to support master’s-level Spectrum Scholarships.

Sandy Wee and Maria Kramer said of the event, “This event had two goals—helping the Spectrum Scholars, who are the future librarians and leaders of APALA and REFORMA, and increasing the social collaborations between our two associations of ethnic librarians. This was a great event that allowed members of both groups to socialize, reunite, network and raise awareness of the Spectrum Scholarship Program.”

The Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA) was founded in 1980 by librarians of diverse Asian/Pacific ancestries committed to working together toward a common goal: to create an organization that would address the needs of Asian/Pacific American librarians and those who serve Asian/Pacific American communities. For more information about APALA, visit

Established in 1971 as an affiliate of the American Library Association (ALA), REFORMA has actively sought to promote the development of library collections to include Spanish-language and Latino oriented materials; the recruitment of more bilingual and bicultural library professionals and support staff; the development of library services and programs that meet the needs of the Latino community; the establishment of a national information and support network among individuals who share our goals; the education of the U.S. Latino population with regard to the availability and types of library services; and lobbying efforts to preserve existing library resource centers serving the interests of Latinos. Nationally, there are 26 REFORMA chapters. For more information on REFORMA, please visit

The Spectrum Scholarship Program is ALA’s national diversity and recruitment effort designed to address the specific issue of underrepresentation of critically needed ethnic librarians within the profession while serving as a model for ways to bring attention to larger diversity issues in the future. Since its founding, Spectrum has provided more than 700 scholarships to qualified applicants enrolled in an ALA-accredited graduate program in library and information studies or an ALA-recognized NCATE School Library Media program. To learn more about the Spectrum Scholarship Program, visit

For more information about the Spectrum Presidential Initiative or to make an online donation, visit To learn more, get involved, or to make a pledge to the Spectrum Presidential Initiative, contact Miguel A. Figueroa, Director, Office for Diversity & Spectrum at, or Kim Olsen-Clark, Director, Development Office at