For immediate release | August 8, 2011

University of Michigan librarians host second annual fundraising dinner for Spectrum

CHICAGO - Librarians at the University of Michigan raised over $1,500 for Spectrum Scholarships at the 2nd Annual Ann Arbor Spectrum Presidential Initiative fundraiser. The event was organized and sponsored by Shevon Desai, Karen Downing, Helen Look, Martin Knott, Alexandra Rivera and Sue Wortman, with venue space generously donated by librarian Ann Gladwin, and cooking by Jeanne Chesky and Javier Lopez.

ALA President Molly Raphael, Immediate Past President Roberta Stevens, ALA President-Elect Maureen Sullivan and ALA Past President Dr. Betty J. Turock, chair of the initiative, continue the Spectrum Presidential Initiative as a special campaign to raise $1 million for the Spectrum Scholarship Program. Through this initiative, ALA aims to meet the critical needs of supporting master’s-level scholarships, providing two $25,000 doctoral scholarships, increasing the Spectrum Endowment to ensure the program’s future and developing special programs for recruitment and career development.

More than 30 guests attended the Mexican Fiesta dinner, including librarians, library support staff, faculty from the School of Information, many past and present Spectrum Scholars and friends from the Ann Arbor community. ALA Past President Richard Dougherty and CIC Director for Library Initiatives Mark Sandler both made generous donations to the dinner, even though they could not be present.

The organizers said, “We are once again very proud of the broad support for the Spectrum Program demonstrated by our colleagues and friends —we are a profession that depends on creativity and diversity, and Spectrum has benefited our library in many ways, including giving us some of our most dynamic librarians!”

The Spectrum Scholarship Program is ALA’s national diversity and recruitment effort designed to address the specific issue of underrepresentation of critically needed ethnic librarians within the profession, while serving as a model for ways to bring attention to larger diversity issues in the future. Since its founding, Spectrum has provided more than 700 scholarships to qualified applicants enrolled in an ALA-accredited graduate program in library and information studies or an AASL-recognized School Library program. To learn more about the Spectrum Scholarship Program, visit

For more information about the Spectrum Presidential Initiative or to make an online donation, visit To learn more, get involved, or to make a pledge to the Spectrum Presidential Initiative, contact Miguel A. Figueroa, director, Office for Diversity & Spectrum at, or Kim Olsen-Clark, director, Development Office at