Julie Cummins wins 2003 ALSC Distinguished Service Award

Contact: Meredith Parets


For Immediate Release

February 7, 2003

Julie Cummins wins 2003 ALSC Distinguished Service Award

Julie Cummins, a consultant, writer and reviewer whose career spans 40 years of service to children's libraries, is the recipient of the 2003 Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) Distinguished Service Award. The award honors an individual ALSC member who has made significant contributions to library service to children and ALSC. The announcement was made at the ALSC Board of Directors meeting during the American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia.

Cummins will receive a monetary award of $1,000 and will be honored at the ALSC membership meeting during the ALA Annual Conference in Toronto, June 2003.

"Julie Cummins is a tireless advocate for children's services whose influence has been far-reaching through leadership, consulting, mentoring, speaking, teaching and writing," said Connie Rockman, chair of the award committee. "Throughout her career, locally, statewide and nationally, Cummins has been a shining example of excellence in services to children and service to the library profession as a whole and has inspired countless colleagues with her exemplary work in all facets of her career."

Cummins' leadership positions in children's services include head of the Central Children's Room at Rochester (N.Y.) Public Library; children's services consultant of the Monroe County (N.Y.) Library System; coordinator of children's services at New York Public Library; and editor-in-chief of
School Library Journal. She has served on numerous committees for ALSC including the Research and Development Committee, the National Advisory Board for the Born to Read Project and chair of the Joint Youth Task Force on Continuity and Change. A strong advocate of excellence in children's literature, Cummins has served as member and/or chair of the Newbery, Caldecott, Laura Ingalls Wilder Committee and Notable Children's Books committees.

On the state level, Cummins has served as president of the New York Library Association (NYLA) as well as president of the youth services division. As a member of ALA Council and the ALA Executive Board, she has consistently been an advocate for youth services within the profession on a national level. As an author and critic, she has written about excellence in children's books through reviews for professional journals, reference books and her own two volumes of "Children's Book Illustration and Design" (PCB International, Vol. 1 - 1992, Vol. 2 - 1996). As an author of books for young people, she has written "The Inside-Outside Book of Libraries" (Dutton, 1996), "Tomboy of the Air: Daredevil Pilot Blanche Stuart Scott" (HarperCollins, 2001) and "Country Kid, City Kid" (Holt, 2002).

As an adjunct faculty member at Pratt School of Information and Library Science, she has influenced many fledgling librarians with her wide range of knowledge and boundless enthusiasm for the field of children's literature and the library profession.

Members of the 2003 ALSC Distinguished Service Award Committee are: Connie Rockman, chair, children's literature consultant; Kay Bishop, University of Buffalo, N.Y.; Margaret Kirkpatrick, retired school librarian, Wichita, Kan.; William Morris, HarperCollins Publishers; and Patsy Weeks, Heart of Texas Literature Center, Brownwood, Texas.

ALSC is a division of ALA.