Co-chair of the Partnership for 21st Century Skills to address attendees at AASL's National Conference 2005

Contact: Kathy Agarwal

Phone: 312-280-4381

Fax: 312-664-7459
For Immediate Release

March 29, 2005

Co-chair of the Partnership for 21st Century Skills to address attendees at AASL's National Conference 2005

CHICAGO - The American Association of School Librarians (AASL) is proud to welcome John Wilson, co-chair of the Partnership for 21st Century Skills and executive director for the National Education Association (NEA), as a featured guest at the AASL 12th National Conference and Exhibition in Pittsburgh. Wilson will bring words of greeting from the Partnership to school library media specialists from around the country at the Closing General Session on Saturday, October 8, 2005, from 3:30-4:30 p.m.

"AASL's decision to join the Partnership is an acknowledgment of our shared vision for learning in the 21st century. We are delighted that John will be delivering the Partnership's message to our conference attendees," said AASL President, Dawn Vaughn.

John Wilson is currently the executive director of the NEA, the nation's largest teachers union. Previously, he served for five years as executive director of the North Carolina Association of Educators (NCAE), which represents 72,000 active and retired school employees. During his time at the helm of the NEA state affiliate, Wilson gained an outstanding reputation for successfully championing statewide education reforms. Under Wilson's leadership, NCAE strengthened teacher training systems, professional development programs, teacher compensation and teacher recruitment. His impressive track record includes the development of new support systems for teachers pursuing certification by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, resulting in more National Board-certified teachers and candidates from North Carolina than any other state.

Coupled with John Wilson's appearance, the Closing General Session will feature a moderated panel made up of experts in the school library media field discussing the latest research on student achievement and how school library media specialists can integrate this research into their daily experience. Panelists include: Steven Baule , principal of Zion-Benton Township High School in Zion, Ill.; Mike Eisenberg , dean of the Information School at the University of Washington; Keith Curry Lance , director of the Library Research Service, a unit of the Colorado State Library and Information Science Program of the University of Denver; and Ross Todd , associate professor in the School of Communication, Information and Library Studies at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey and director of research for the Center for International Scholarship in School Libraries (CISSL). The panel discussion will be moderated by Ferdi Serim, founder of the Online Internet Institute ( and former editor of Multimedia & Internet@Schools magazine. For more information about the AASL National Conference go to

The Partnership for 21st Century Skills ( was formed in 2002 with support from the U.S. Department of Education and is the leading advocacy organization transforming learning in the 21st century. In 2003, the Partnership issued
Learning for the 21st Century: A Report and MILE Guide for 21st Century Skills , which articulates a collective vision for learning in the 21st century and assists schools, districts and states in meeting the challenges of incorporating 21st century skills into their curriculum. AASL joined the Partnership in February 2005.

NEA represents 2.7 million members, a staff of 565 and an annual budget of over $267 million. NEA also represents education support professionals, higher education faculty, school administrators, retired educators, and education students who plan to become teachers.

The American Association of School Librarians (, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), promotes the improvement and extension of library media services in elementary and secondary schools as a means of strengthening the total education program. Its mission is to advocate excellence, facilitate change and develop leaders in the school library media field.