Libraries are invited to apply for the 2022 Will Eisner Graphic Novel Grants for Libraries

For Immediate Release
Thu, 10/07/2021


Tina Coleman

Staff Liaison

Graphic Novels & Comics Round Table

American Library Association


CHICAGO  —  The Graphic Novels & Comics Round Table (GNCRT) of ALA and the Will and Ann Eisner Family Foundation are pleased to announce the opening of the 2022 Will Eisner Graphic Novel Grants for Libraries grant cycle. These grants recognize libraries for their role in the growth of graphic literature and awards funds and resources for graphic novel collection development and programming and are open to libraries and institutions across North America.

Through these grants, the GNCRT and the Will and Ann Eisner Family Foundation seek to continue to extend graphic novels into new realms by encouraging public awareness about the rise and importance of graphic literature and honoring the legacy and creative excellence of Will Eisner. For a career that spanned nearly eight decades — from the dawn of the comic book to the advent of digital comics — Will Eisner is recognized as the “Champion of the Graphic Novel.”

Three grants will be awarded: two recipients will receive Will Eisner Graphic Novel Growth Grants which provide support to libraries that would like to expand their existing graphic novel collection, services, and programs; and one recipient will receive the Will Eisner Graphic Novel Innovation Grant which provides support to a library for the initiation of a new graphic novel service or program. Recipients each receive a $4,000 programming and collection development grant. In addition, the winners will also receive a collection of Will Eisner’s works and biographies as well as a selection of winning titles from the 2022 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards at Comic-Con International. The grant also includes a travel stipend for a library representative to travel to the 2022 ALA Annual Conference in Washington, DC where they will also receive recognition from the Will and Ann Eisner Family Foundation at the annual Will Eisner Graphic Novel Grants Reception. The applying librarian or their institution must be an ALA member to be eligible and the grants are open to libraries across North America, including Canada and Mexico.

“Each year since 2014, it has been our pleasure to partner with the ALA in the Will Eisner Graphic Novel Grant program for libraries. With the opening of this grant cycle, and on behalf of the Foundation, we thank all the librarians who participated in the past as well as those chosen grant winners. We hope the overwhelming enthusiasm and support continues for the program and results in even more participants than last year. The provision of funding for graphic novels helps defray the cost of graphic novel acquisition due to declining budgets, and helps librarians engage their communities in ways that encourage everlasting awareness of this unique and highly creative literary and artistic reading experience.” says Nancy and Carl Gropper of the Will and Ann Eisner Family Foundation. “Will Eisner loved this medium and wanted to convince the public of its virtues. Convincing libraries to include graphic novels and comics on their shelves was his unrelenting mission. We honor his memory with these grants.”

The Will Eisner Graphic Novel Grants for Libraries are administered by the Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table. GNCRT President, Matthew Noe said of the grants, “Each year, thanks to the generosity of the Will and Ann Eisner Family Foundation, we at GNCRT are lucky to facilitate not only the growth of existing comics programming, but also support innovative new approaches by offering funding through the Will Eisner Graphic Novel Grants for Libraries. In past years, awardees have done everything from hosting creators to help young patrons create their own comics, to building one of the earliest graphic medicine collections, to bringing comics to incarcerated readers. The sky is the limit and I cannot wait to see what this year's applicants have in mind!"

The application and information about the Will Eisner Graphic Novel Grants for Libraries can be found on the Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table Eisner Grants page. Interested applicants will find resources and examples on the Eisner Grants FAQ page to help guide them through the process of writing their grant applications. The application deadline is Sunday February 13, 2022. For any inquiries, please contact ALA Graphic Novels & Comics in Libraries Round Table staff liaison Tina Coleman at


About the Will and Ann Eisner Family Foundation

The Will and Ann Eisner Family Foundation fosters innovation and creativity in graphic literature, sequential art, and comics. It encourages others to continue and build upon the legacy of Will Eisner (1917 – 2005), who broke new ground in the development of visual narrative and the language of comics and was the creator of The Spirit, John Law, Lady Luck, Mr. Mystic, Uncle Sam, Blackhawk, Sheena and countless others. Will Eisner is well known for his 17 graphic novels and three textbooks. For more information about Will Eisner visit


About the Graphic Novels & Comics Round Table

The Graphic Novels and Comics Round Table of the American Library Association is dedicated to supporting library staff in all aspects of engaging with graphic novels and comics, including collection development, programming, and advocacy. For more information connect with GNCRT on Facebook; Twitter: @libcomix; Instagram: @libcomix; or check out the GNCRT website.


About the American Library Association

The American Library Association (ALA), the oldest and largest library association in the world, provides leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.