AASL President’s Program to focus on diversity with speaker Jervette Ward

For Immediate Release
Tue, 04/10/2018


Jennifer Habley

Manager, Web Communications

American Association of School Librarians (AASL)



CHICAGO – Dr. Jervette R. Ward, associate professor of English at the University of Alaska Anchorage, will conclude the American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) Awards Ceremony & President’s Program taking place at 9 a.m. on Saturday, June 23, as part of the 2018 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans.

Ward’s research and teaching areas focus on American literature with an emphasis in African American women's literature. She earned a B.A. in journalism and a Ph.D. in English literary and cultural studies from The University of Memphis. Ward has taught and published on Zora Neale Hurston, the addition of the African American characters to the Dick and Jane series, and social justice. 

"I was fortunate to hear Dr. Jervette Ward speak during my presidential affiliate visit to the Alaska School Library Association/Alaska Library Association conference," said AASL President Steven Yates. "Dr. Ward's thoughts on equity, diversity and inclusion resonated with me and left me energized for continuing my commitment to these tenets in my teaching and professional service. I am excited to have a small role in providing ALA Annual Conference attendees the opportunity to hear what she has to say."

Ward is the editor of the anthology “Real Sister: Stereotypes, Respectability, and Black Women in Reality TV.” In the anthology ten female scholars from a variety of disciplines address concerns about how reality TV reinforces stereotypes but also inspires a positive and more nuanced conversation about representations and their effects on the black community.

The AASL Awards Ceremony and President's Program is an annual event featuring prominent experts on issues relevant to school librarianship and is open to all registered conference attendees. For more information about this and other AASL programs at the 2018 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans, visit www.ala.org/aasl/annual.

The American Association of School Librarians, www.aasl.org, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), empowers leaders to transform teaching and learning.