IFRT Emerging Leader Videos Engage Non-Librarians

For Immediate Release
Mon, 07/15/2019


Kristin Pekoll

Staff Liaison

Intellectual Freedom Round Table

American Library Association



ALA’s Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT) is pleased to announce the publication of four videos to engage non-librarians in the fight to protect intellectual freedom. The brief explainer videos cover the basics of intellectual freedom, censorship, and privacy for a non-library audience with key definitions and everyday language.

The videos were created as part of the 2019 Emerging Leaders project sponsored by IFRT and showcased at the ALA Annual Conference in Washington D.C. The Emerging Leaders Program of the American Library Association is a “leadership development program which enables newer library workers from across the country to participate in problem-solving work groups, network with peers, gain an inside look into ALA structure, and have an opportunity to serve the profession in a leadership capacity.”

“One of the most important things we can do in intellectual freedom is to educate those who are unfamiliar with the topics, whether they are our stakeholders, our audiences, or our colleagues,” said Mack Freeman, 2018-2019 IFRT Chair. “The Emerging Leader team did a great job creating videos that libraries of all types can use and share to teach others about intellectual freedom, and we hope that this is just the beginning of usable intellectual freedom resources that will become available from IFRT.” 

These resources are for community members everywhere to share on social media, use with their boards, incorporate into new hire training, and use as general advocacy tools to make sure that library ideals are upheld. The videos can be found on YouTube.

The 2019 IFRT Emerging Leader team included 

  • Nicola Andrews is a Ngāti Paoa scholar who participated in the ALA Emerging Leaders Program with sponsorship from the Social Responsibilities Round Table. They previously served as an NCSU Libraries Fellow at NC State University Libraries, and are the incoming Instruction/First Year Experience Librarian for the University of San Francisco.
  • Jade Geary participated in the ALA Emerging Leaders Program with sponsorship from the South Carolina Library Association. Jade is the Instructional Design Librarian at the University of South Carolina's Thomas Cooper Library. Jade is also a doctoral student in Curriculum and Instruction with an Educational Technology focus also at the University of South Carolina.
  • Cyndi Hamann is the Teen Librarian at Crystal Lake Public Library in Crystal Lake, IL. She is an active member of PLA, YALSA, and the Illinois Library Association, and is currently serving on YALSA’s Amazing Audiobooks team. She’s passionate about teen service, reader’s advisory, and wacky programming.
  • Kacy Helwick is the Youth Collection Development Librarian for the New Orleans Public Library, and an active member of ALSC, YALSA, and the Rainbow and Graphic Novels & Comics Round Tables. She also volunteers as a content editor for NoFlyingNoTights.com and reviewer for School Library Journal.
  • Jess Newman is an Assistant Professor and the Assessment and Scholarly Communications Librarian at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. This is her first year with ALA, but she is an active member with the Association for Information Science and Technology and the Digital Library Federation. Her background is in digital curation, information literacy, and science education.


Intellectual Freedom Round Table logoThe Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT) provides a forum for the discussion of activities, programs and problems in intellectual freedom of libraries and librarians; serves as a channel of communications on intellectual freedom matters; promotes a greater opportunity for involvement among the members of the ALA in defense of intellectual freedom; promotes a greater feeling of responsibility in the implementation of ALA policies on intellectual freedom. @IFRT_ALA