Hawaii State Library to host library leaders, elected officials, for closing virtual celebration of national library tour

For Immediate Release
Thu, 08/06/2020


Shawnda Hines

ALA Media Relations

Communications & Marketing / Public Policy & Advocacy


CHICAGO – On Friday, Aug. 7, at 11 a.m. HST (4:00 p.m. CDT), along with local library champions, American Library Association (ALA) President Julius C. Jefferson, Jr., will bring Holding Space: A national conversation series with libraries, to a close at the Hawai’i State Library. During the virtual celebration, Jefferson will talk with library professionals about the state’s thriving library ecosystem, thank some of Hawai'i's strongest champions, and hear from rising leaders about their vision for libraries. The virtual celebration, The Spirit of Aloha: Hawai'i Libraries Light the Path, is free and open to the public, with registration.  


  • Stacey Aldrich, State Librarian, Hawaii State Public Library System
  • Congressman Ed Case
  • State Senate President Ronald D. Kouchi
  • State Representative Della Au Belatti
  • Michael Aldrich, President, Hawaii Library Association
  • Gailyn Bopp, Brigham Young University  Hawaii and Association of Hawaii Archivists
  • Sharrese Castillo, Branch Manager, Wahiawa
  • Kelsey Faradineh, Branch Manager, Nanakuli
  • Keikilani Meyer, Kamehameha Schools 
  • Catherine Payne, Chair, Hawaii Board of Education 

“The Hawai'i State Library and libraries across the nation are improving lives every day, providing internet access to underserved communities, helping people find jobs and build careers, preserving history and culture, and empowering students as they develop literacy skills that will lead to lifelong learning,” said Jefferson. 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 professional organization and local community need to listen, and their elected leaders need to support them.”

The Hawai'i State Library concludes 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 is holding community discussions exploring local and national solutions to local and national issues addressed by libraries, such as children and family services, workforce development programs, outreach to rural residents, and broadband for rural and Tribal communities. 

“We are concluding a two-week national ALA tour doing so in the spirit of Aloha,” said Jefferson. “I am grateful for the opportunity to explore the transformative work of the libraries I’ve visited on this tour and grateful for all who participate in ALA’s mission to "provide leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all."

“We hear so much in the media about our divided country,” said Jefferson, “but this tour has shown people across the country what a uniting force our nation’s school, academic, public and state libraries are. They bring educational and economic opportunity to every person they serve, regardless of background, belief system or socioeconomic level." 

Throughout the tour, Jefferson has also invited 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 ala.org/advocacy/holding-space

For more information on tour stops and how to join, visit ala.org/advocacy/holding-space. 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 shines@alawash.org
  • Steve Zalusky, Communications Specialist, ALA Communications and Marketing Office, at (312) 280-1546 or szalusky@ala.org 

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 ala.org.