Nashville Public Library gives sneak peek of Votes for Women Room during virtual event with nation’s library leaders

For Immediate Release
Mon, 07/27/2020


Shawnda Hines

ALA Media Relations

Communications & Marketing / Public Policy & Advocacy

CHICAGO – On Wednesday, July 29, at 1 p.m. CT, American Library Association (ALA) President Julius C. Jefferson, Jr., and library workers across the country will pay a virtual visit to the Nashville Public Library to hear how library spaces bring members of the community together to learn about the past, confront the present, and envision a better future. The half-hour presentation, Leveraging Place to Engage Community, is open to the public and will include a sneak peek at the soon-to-be unveiled Votes for Women Room.

For years, the Civil Rights Room at the Nashville Public Library has served as a center for engagement and community dialogue. With the opening of the Votes for Women Room in August, the library will commemorate another movement of historical significance and contemporary relevance. Joining the conversation with Jefferson are Nashville Public Library Director Kent Oliver, Civil Rights and Votes for Women Rooms Director Andrea Blackman.

“Nashville Public Library and libraries across the state are improving lives every day, helping people find jobs and build careers, providing internet access to underserved communities, empowering students as they develop literacy skills that will lead to lifelong learning,” said Jefferson.“Many of these successes take place in the shadows. Their stories need to be told, their local community and professional organization need to listen, and their elected leaders need to support them.”

Nashville Public Library is the third on Jefferson’s 12-stop virtual tour, Holding Space: A national conversation series with libraries, to spotlight how libraries of all kinds across the country are addressing the needs of their diverse communities and engaging stakeholders to advocate for libraries. At each stop of the 10-day tour, Jefferson will hold community discussions exploring local and national solutions to local and national issues addressed by libraries, such as workforce development programs, children and family services, outreach to rural residents, and broadband for rural and Tribal communities.

Throughout the tour, Jefferson will also invite participants to join ALA advocates, who are currently supporting the Library Stabilization Fund Act to provide federal resources to libraries during the COVID pandemic. For more information on tour stops and how to join, visit

To speak with ALA President Julius C. Jefferson, Jr., or other library leaders/advocates, contact:

  • Shawnda Hines, assistant director, communications, ALA Public Policy and Advocacy Office, at (202) 628-8410 ext. 8208 or
  • Steve Zalusky, Communications Specialist, ALA Communications and Marketing Office, at (312) 280-1546 or

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