Barbara Will named recipient of ASCLA Cathleen Bourdon Service Award

Contact: Eileen Hardy


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For Immediate Release,


March 10, 2008


Barbara Will named recipient of ASCLA Cathleen Bourdon Service Award

CHICAGO -Barbara H. Will, former library programs consultant in Library Development Services at the California State Library from 1987 to 2006, is the 2008 recipient of the Cathleen Bourdon Service Award. Will, who died in July 2007, is receiving the award posthumously. The award is presented by the Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies (ASCLA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA).




The Cathleen Bourdon Service Award is a citation presented to recognize an ASCLA personal member for outstanding service and leadership to the division. The award recognizes sustained leadership and exceptional service through participation in activities that have enhanced the stature, reputation and overall strength of ASCLA and represented ASCLA to other appropriate organizations, institutions or governmental agencies.




Barbara Will was a nationally known champion and expert on federal funding for libraries and the Library Services and Technology Act. She was essential to the establishment of the LSTA Success Stories Web page. In addition, she had a history of dedicated service to ASCLA that spanned more than 20 years, serving as division president, member of the board of directors, chair of the Conference Program and member of the Legislation, Library Standards for Juvenile Correctional Institutions, LSTA Reauthorization, Planning and Budget, President's Task Force on Membership Recruitment, Publications and Standards Review Committees. She was active with ALA, serving on the Equality Award Jury, Information Today Library of the Future Award, Legislation Assembly, Marshall Cavendish Excellence in Library Programming Award and Sullivan Award for Public Library Administrative Support Services to Children committees.




While working for the California State Library, Will developed several successful LSTA-targeted programs, which included the Library Services to People with Disabilities Program and Library Services to Small Business Program. Will wrote many articles during her distinguished career as a librarian, including “Creating the Library Habit” (Library Journal) and “California: Library Information Technologies Report” (Library HiTech).




“The ASCLA Awards Committee pays tribute to the late Barbara Will by conferring on her posthumously the Cathleen Bourdon Service Award. Will unceasingly advocated for federal funding for libraries, continually leading the campaign for the reauthorization of the Library Services and Technology Act. Every year she tenaciously fought for the highest possible funding appropriation from Congress,” said Kathleen Hegarty, chair of the award committee.




“During her lifetime Barbara Will received the ASCLA Leadership Achievement Award for her professional activities. ASCLA bestows this additional honor in recognition of the special place she holds in ASCLA-and library-history as a valiant champion of America's libraries.”




The award will be presented to her husband, Gerry Bowers, and she will be honored at the ASCLA Award Ceremony 10:30 a.m. to noon on June 29 during the ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim (Calif.).