For immediate release | March 29, 2024

Hutchinson Memorial Library awarded 2024 Baker & Taylor Summer Reading Program Grant

CHICAGO - The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) has awarded the 2024 ALSC/Baker & Taylor Summer Reading Program Grant to the Hutchinson Memorial Library in Randolph, Wisconsin.

This grant is designed to encourage outstanding summer reading programs by providing financial assistance while recognizing ALSC members for outstanding program development. The program must be open to all children from birth to age 14. The grant encourages summer programming that provides for the inclusion of children with physical and mental disabilities. This $3,000 grant is made possible by Baker & Taylor, a leading supplier of books, digital and software services to public and academic libraries.

The Hutchinson Memorial Library, located in Randolph, Wisconsin, serves a small rural community located both in Dodge and Columbia County. Nearly 33% of school-age children in the Randolph School District are economically disadvantaged.

Funding from the Baker & Taylor Summer Reading Grant will allow the Hutchinson Memorial Library to bring inclusive literacy opportunities to children and families through their 10-week summer reading program, including events such as interactive workshops designed to accommodate various learning and attention styles, sensory-friendly activities, special guest speakers addressing topics related to mental health, emotional well-being, and understanding differences. The program will culminate with an inclusivity celebration. Staff training and partnerships with local organizations and support groups for children with disabilities will allow the library to expand its resources and reach.

“The committee was impressed by the scope and detail of the library’s inclusive summer reading program plan,” said Maren Ostergard and Sarah French, 2023-24 Programs and Services Recognition committee co-chairs. “The 10-week program will provide many opportunities for learning and engagement for children and families in the community. Funding from this grant will allow the library to focus on inclusivity and diverse learning styles and expand its sensory-friendly approach to programming during the summer to ensure that all children, regardless of their background or abilities, can experience an innovative and enriching summer program, while also providing resources, equipment, and training that will continue to serve the community after summer has ended.”

“Our warmest congratulations to Hutchinson Memorial Library,” said Bobbie Bensur, Director of Childrens and Teen Services for Baker & Taylor, “Summer Reading Programs are often the first interaction our youngest community members have with their library. These programs are essential for developing lifelong readers and learners.”

About the Association for Library Service to Children

ALSC, a division of the ALA, is the world’s largest organization dedicated to the support and enhancement of library service to children. With a network of more than 4,000 children’s and youth librarians, literature experts, publishers and educational faculty, ALSC is committed to creating a better future for children through libraries. To learn more about ALSC, visit ALSC’s website at


Ana Cackley

Awards Coordinator

Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC)