Contact: Louisa Worthington

Public Library Association

(312) 280-5024


For Immediate Release

July 15, 2008

PLA now accepting applications for new Leadership Fellows program

The Public Library Association (PLA) is now accepting applications for the PLA Leadership Fellows program.

A new, innovative educational opportunity created to help develop leaders in public libraries, PLA Leadership Fellows offers PLA members who are public library managers a chance to attend executive leadership training at some of the best universities in the United States, including:

  • Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government, Senior Executives in State and Local Government;
  • University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School of Business, Leading Organizational Change;
  • University of Michigan, Ross School of Business, Positive Leadership - Creating Spectacular Organizational Successes; and
  • Columbia University, Business School, Leadership Development Program

The PLA Leadership Taskforce reviewed and chose programs that focus on teaching management concepts not generally learned in a library school setting.

PLA Leadership Taskforce Chair Luis Herrera said, “Leadership and change management skills are vital for our public library leaders to understand in order to move their organizations forward. We want to extend unique learning opportunities to our members who want to broaden their perspectives, enhance their leadership skills, drive change in their institutions and plan with a strategic vision.”

Each executive leadership program varies in length, as well as scope and focus, and candidates are encouraged to research the programs to determine which is best suited to their needs before applying. The PLA Leadership Fellows program will cover the cost of tuition, as well as housing and most meals. Transportation and any additional meals are the responsibility of the attendee.

Candidates must be PLA members who are management staff in a public library system with a minimum of five years experience in a leadership role. Anyone interested in applying should review each program to determine which one is right for you. Selected participants will be asked to share their experience at a PLA program and provide input to the Leadership Taskforce in an effort to help shape a comprehensive leadership development program for PLA. Applications are being accepted now at

PLA is a division of the American Library Association. PLA's core purpose is to strengthen public libraries and their contribution to the communities they serve. Its mission is to enhance the development and effectiveness of public library staff and public library services.