PLA announces 2003 Award winners

Contact: Nicole Wheatley


312-280-5026






For Immediate Release


March 10, 2003

PLA announces 2003 Award winners

Winners of eight distinguished service awards have been announced by the Public Library Association (PLA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA).

PLA's Advancement of Literacy Award was awarded to the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities' Prime Time Family Reading Time program. Sponsored by
Library Journal, the award is given to a publisher, bookseller, software dealer, foundation or similar group that has made a significant contribution toward the advancement of adult literacy.

Allie Beth Martin Award. Michael B. Gannon, branch manager at the Maryland City at Russett Branch of the Anne Arundel County Public Library, Laurel, Md., is the winner of the $3,000 award donated by sponsor Baker & Taylor. This award recognizes a public librarian for demonstrating a range and depth of knowledge about books and other library materials and the distinguished ability to share that knowledge.

The Baker & Taylor Entertainment Audio Music/Video Product Award Grant went to the Fairview (N.J.) Free Public Library. This grant offers the selected library $2,500 in audio music and video products for its circulating collections.

PLA's Charlie Robinson Award has been awarded to Judith Drescher, director of libraries at the Memphis-Shelby County Public Library & Information Center, Memphis, Tenn. This award recognizes a public library director for implementation of innovative change. Sponsored by Baker & Taylor, this award consists of $1,000 and a gift.

The Demco Creative Merchandising Grant was awarded to the Guilderland (N.Y.) Public Library. The grant, sponsored by Demco, Inc., provides $1,000 cash and $2,000 worth of supplies to a public library proposing a project for the creative display and merchandising of materials either in the library or in the community.

EBSCO Excellence in Small and/or Rural Public Library Service Award was awarded to the Haines (Alaska) Borough Public Library. EBSCO Subscription Services donated $1,000 to honor a public library serving a population of 10,000 or fewer that demonstrates excellence in service to its community as exemplified by an overall service program or a special program of significant accomplishment.

The Highsmith Library Innovation Award was awarded to the Panther Express project at the Platteville (Colo.) Public Library. A plaque and a $2,000 honorarium are provided by Highsmith, Inc., the award's sponsor, to recognize a public library's innovative or creative service program to their community.

New Leaders Travel Grants were awarded to Cynthia Robertson, librarian I at the Mountain Road Branch, Anne Arundel County Public Libraries, Pasadena, Md., and Darlene Weber, children's librarian at the Stanwood (Wash.) Library, Sno-Isle Regional Library System. PLA provides up to $5,000 to support the professional development and improve the expertise of public librarians new to the field by making possible their attendance at major professional development activities.

PLA will recognize all award winners at the PLA President's Program and Reception during the 2003 ALA Annual Conference in Toronto. The reception will take place Monday, June 23, 2003, from 4-7 p.m at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel, 100 Front Street West. Jo Ann Pinder, PLA president, will preside.

For more information, call the PLA office, 800-545-2433, ext. 5PLA, or see
PLA's Web site.