Proving your library’s value through persuasive messaging

For Immediate Release
Wed, 08/12/2020


Rob Christopher

Marketing Coordinator

ALA Publishing

American Library Association


CHICAGO — You know the value of your library, but elected officials, donors, community leaders, funders, and other important stakeholders may not. How can you make the library a priority for these groups, who may have preconceived notions about what the library does, as you compete with other important community organizations for funding? “Proving Your Library’s Value: Persuasive, Organized, and Memorable Messaging,” published by ALA Editions in collaboration with United for Libraries, will show you how to succeed. In this book by Alan Fishel and Jillian Wentworth, you’ll read about using The E’s of Libraries® (Education, Employment, Entrepreneurship, Engagement, and Empowerment) to quickly demonstrate why your library is essential and worthy of funding. With the help of worksheets, charts, and prompts, you will learn how to:

  • use language designed to win over stakeholders, funders, and partners;
  • craft custom messaging in several formats that is easily accessible and memorable, including elevator speeches, budget presentations, and annual appeals; and
  • create presentations and other materials tailored to any audience based on the sample documents included.

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Fishel is a partner at the law firm of Arent Fox and leads the firm’s Communications & Technology group. He has represented ALA on many matters, including at the Federal Communications Commission regarding the proceeding under which the FCC increased the size of the E-rate fund by more than $1 billion annually. Alan also serves on the United for Libraries board, and he is the chair of The E’s of Libraries® Task Force. In addition, he frequently provides training on a variety of topics, including how to improve advocacy and negotiation skills. Wentworth is the Manager of Marketing & Membership for United for Libraries, a division of the American Library Association. She has also worked as a librarian, editor, and journalist. She has presented on library advocacy, working with Friends groups and library trustees, and more at national, regional, state, and local library conferences and workshops.

United for Libraries, a division of the American Library Association, supports those who govern, promote, advocate, and fundraise for libraries, and brings together library trustees, advocates, friends, and foundations into a partnership that creates a powerful force for libraries in the 21st century. For more information, visit

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