Laurie Halse Anderson named School Library Media Month spokesperson

Contact: Melissa Jacobsen

AASL Communications Specialist

(312) 280-4381


For Immediate Release

January 12, 2009

CHICAGO – Award-winning author Laurie Halse Anderson is the official spokesperson for the American Association of School Librarians' (AASL) School Library Media Month (SLMM) 2010 celebration.

"AASL is extremely excited to have Laurie Halse Anderson as our official spokesperson for School Library Media Month," said AASL President, Cassandra Barnett. "Her support and enthusiasm for school library media specialists and their programs will help bring national attention to the essential role we play in a student's educational career."

Anderson's first novel, "Speak," was a National Book Award Finalist, a Michael L. Printz Honor book, a New York Times bestseller and an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults. In 2009, Anderson received the Margaret A. Edwards Award for Lifetime Achievement for her body of work for young adults. In 2008, she also received the prestigious ALAN Award, which honors those who have made outstanding contributions to the field of adolescent literature. Anderson's most recent novel, "Wintergirls," was released in March 2009. "Wintergirls" has received five-star reviews and debuted on the New York Times bestseller list. In addition to writing novels, Anderson writes picture books and chapter books for elementary age children.

School library media specialists should visit the SLMM Web pages regularly to find updated resources to help celebrate SLMM within their school and local community. Currently, letters for local legislators and 30 days of activities based on the theme "Communities thrive @ your library" are available to download. AASL is also holding a video contest for members and their students to share how their school library media program helps their community thrive. In addition, every Wednesday, starting April 7, AASL will offer webinars for school library media specialists to learn more about the implementation of AASL's program guidelines. School library media specialists are encouraged to check the AASL Web site ( and AASL blog ( regularly for more information, new resources and activities.

School Library Media Month, begun in 1985, is celebrated in conjunction with National Library Week (April 12-18). Every April school library media specialists are encouraged to create activities to help their school and local community celebrate the essential role that strong school library media programs play in a student's educational career. The 2010 theme is "Communities thrive @ your library."

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.