ALA President Loida Garcia-Febo’s ‘Libraries = Strong Communities’ tour reaches next stop in LA

For Immediate Release
Wed, 05/08/2019


Steve Zalusky

Communications Specialist

Communications and Marketing Office

American Library Association

(312) 280-1546

CHICAGO — American Library Association (ALA) President Loida Garcia-Febo will visit Los Angeles on the next stop of her Libraries = Strong Communities tour.

At 10 a.m. PT (11 a.m. MT, 12 p.m. CT, 1 p.m. ET) on Tuesday, May 14, Garcia-Febo will appear at the city council chambers at Los Angeles City Hall, where the city council will present a resolution in honor of her efforts to highlight the value of libraries and empower people to advocate for their libraries. A live stream of the event will be available at

At the event, the Los Angeles Public Library will recognize its 7,500 volunteers, who, in 2018, generously donated more than 164,000 hours of service, valued at $4.8 million. City Librarian John F. Szabo, surrounded by library volunteers, will present a symbolic check for that amount to the City Council.

City Council Member David Ryu, 4th District, will offer a "Libraries=Strong Communities" resolution to Garcia-Febo and a Volunteer Appreciation resolution to the Los Angeles Public Library.

“I’m thrilled that the American Library Association and its President, Loida Garcia-Febo, recognize the Los Angeles Public Library’s success in delivering groundbreaking services that meet the needs of our diverse communities,” said City Librarian John F. Szabo. “I look forward to welcoming Loida Garcia-Febo to Los Angeles and partnering with her in the Libraries = Strong Communities initiative to expand awareness of our innovative, high-impact programs.”

Other highlights of Garcia-Febo’s visit include, on Wednesday, May 15, tours of the Central Library and several branch libraries and a reception with library supporters, community partners and librarians from throughout southern California. A live stream of this event will be available through the Los Angales Public Libary Facebook page begining at 12:30 PT (1:30 p.m. MT, 2:30 p.m.CT, 3:30 p.m. CT). 

Libraries = Strong Communities is a national advocacy effort aimed at highlighting the value of academic, public and school libraries. This initiative is uniquely positioned to ignite public awareness of the value of libraries and library staff and create a groundswell of support at the local, state, national and global level. Garcia-Febo announced the effort during the ALA Annual Conference & Exhibit Inaugural Banquet in New Orleans.

In an era filled with political and social strife, our nation’s libraries continue to play an invaluable role in providing resources and expertise that foster community engagement and transform lives through education and lifelong learning.  

“As cornerstones of democracy, libraries empower users to make informed decisions by providing free access to information,” said Garcia-Febo. “Libraries provide more than just books. They support community engagement and the delivery of new services that connect closely with patrons’ needs. As libraries transform we should seize every opportunity to showcase their magnificent work.” 

The Libraries = Strong Communities tour efforts will conclude on June 22, 2019, culminating with a rally and celebration at 11 a.m. on the Exhibits Floor during the ALA Annual Conference & Exhibition in Washington, D.C.

Past tour locations have provided an opportunity for Garcia- Febo, participating library leaders and local advocates to address local and national issues as well as generate public awareness of programs and resources. Elected officials, community-based organizations, state library associations, ALA divisions and chapter members and the public were among the participants in local events and advocacy efforts.

A recipient of the nation’s highest honor for library service, the National Medal from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the Los Angeles Public Library serves the largest and most diverse urban population of any library in the nation. Its Central Library, 72 branch libraries, collection of more than 6 million books, state-of-the-art technology accessible at, and more than 25,000 public programs a year provide everyone with free and easy access to information and the opportunity for lifelong learning.

The American Library Association (ALA) is the foremost national organization providing resources to inspire library and information professionals to transform their communities through essential programs and services. For more than 140 years, the ALA has been the trusted voice for academic, public, school, government and special libraries, advocating for the profession and the library’s role in enhancing learning and ensuring access to information for all. For more information, visit