Lucille C. Thomas named 2007 Freedom to Read Foundation Roll of Honor Award recipient

Contact: Judith F. Krug
Director, Office for Intellectual Freedom
For Immediate Release
June 8, 2007

Lucille C. Thomas named 2007 Freedom to Read Foundation Roll of Honor Award recipient

CHICAGO - Lucille C. Thomas, immediate past president of the Brooklyn (N.Y.) Public Library’s Board of Trustees and former assistant director of the New York City Board of Education, Office of Library, Media & Telecommunications, is the recipient of the 2007 Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) Roll of Honor Award.

This year marks Thomas’ 50th year of membership in the American Library Association (ALA); in 2003 she was awarded an honorary membership, ALA’s highest honor. A member of and former liaison to the FTRF Board, Thomas is a longtime advocate of the principles of intellectual freedom and equity of access to information in public and school libraries. Among her many other activities, she has been a member of the ALA Executive Board, president of the International Association of School Librarianship, chair of the ALA Committee on Professional Ethics, chair of the Intellectual Freedom Committee of the Association of Library Trustees and Advocates, and has served on the Board of the Black Caucus of ALA. She currently serves as a trustee of the LeRoy C. Merritt Humanitarian Fund, which provides financial assistance to librarians facing job loss or retaliation due to their defense of intellectual freedom or because of discrimination.

“We are thrilled to be able to add Lucille’s name to the FTRF Roll of Honor,” said FTRF Executive Director Judith Krug. “She is a legendary figure in librarianship, and a staunch champion of this organization and its ideals. Her entire career has been centered on increasing access—without restriction—to the wealth of information in libraries. On the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Roll of Honor, it is fitting to have such a distinguished colleague accept this award.”

The award will be presented at the 2007 ALA Annual Conference during its Opening General Session on Saturday, June 23, from 5:30–7 p.m., at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

The Freedom to Read Foundation Roll of Honor was established in 1987 to recognize and honor those individuals who have contributed substantially to FTRF through adherence to its principles and/or substantial monetary support. FTRF was founded in 1969 to promote and defend the right of individuals to freely express ideas and to access information in libraries and elsewhere. FTRF fulfills its mission through the disbursement of grants to individuals and groups, primarily for the purpose of aiding them in litigation, and through direct participation in litigation dealing with freedom of speech and of the press.