Dr. Camila Alire begins term as 2009-10 ALA president

Contact: Macey Morales

Manager, ALA Media Relations




For Immediate Release

July 15, 2009

Dr. Camila Alire, dean emerita at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo., begins her term as 2009-2010 president of the American Library Association (ALA). An inaugural banquet was held Tuesday, July 14 at the ALA Annual Conference in Chicago.

As ALA president, Alire is the chief elected officer of the oldest and largest library organization in the world. Established in 1876, the American Library Association has more than 65,000 members. Its mission is to provide leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.

“It is an honor to have the opportunity to lead the American Library Association. ALA embodies the hard work of all the librarians, information specialists, and library support staff who take serving the information needs of their communities very seriously. One of my goals is to provide another level of advocacy that articulates the not only the value of all types of libraries, but also the value of our members working in those libraries to their respective communities.”

Alire is currently professor of practice (adjunct) for Simmons College’s Ph.D. program in managerial leadership and part-time professor for San Jose State University Library & Information Science’s executive MLIS managerial leadership program.

She served as dean of libraries at the University of Colorado at Denver and worked as a community college library director, special library director, school librarian (K-12) and assistant to the dean/instructor at the University of Denver’s LIS program.

Alire chaired several committees including the ALA’s Committee on Legislation, Nominating Committee; Committee on Education and American Libraries Advisory Committee; the 2005 ACRL National Conference Committee; the Colorado Council on Library Development board; several Colorado Association of Libraries committees; and several regional library system-governing boards. She has served on ALA Council, ALA Executive Board and the Association for Research Libraries board

Alire is a past president of the Association for College and Research Libraries (ACRL) (2005) and served as the national president (1993-94) of the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking (REFORMA). ACRL is a division of ALA; REFORMA is an affiliate of ALA.

Alire was named to the ALA/ALTA National Advocacy Honor Roll for her library advocacy work; received the Mountain Plains Library Association’s Legislative Award; and named Scholar-in-Residence for the Chicago Public Library System. She received the first ALA Elizabeth Futas Catalyst for Change Award and National REFORMA’s Librarian of the Year.

She was honored one year by Hispanic Business Magazine as one of the 100 most influential Hispanics in the country.

Alire also co-authored books on library services to Latino communities, disaster recovery, and leadership and has written extensively on diversity.

Roberta Stevens, outreach projects and partnerships officer at the Library of Congress and project manager for the National Book Festival, today also begins her term as ALA president-elect. She will assume the ALA presidency in June 2010 at the ALA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C.