Vinton librarian receives I Love My Librarian Award 

For Immediate Release
Mon, 01/10/2022


Communications and Marketing Office

ALA Media Relations


Renee Greenlee recognized with national public service honor 

CHICAGO – Renee Greenlee, former children and family services librarian at the Marion Public Library (MPL) in Marion, Iowa, and current director of the Vinton Public Library in Vinton, Iowa, is a winner of this year’s I Love My Librarian Award. Recognized by the American Library Association (ALA) for the deep impact she’s made on her local community, Greenlee was selected from more than 1,300 nominations from library users across the country. 

During her time at MPL, Greenlee facilitated and created an abundance of dynamic programming for the Marion community, from engaging toddlers and preschoolers with music and movement and evening “Pajama Story Time” for families to a sensory browsing hour designed to welcome patrons with sensory or behavioral needs. With help from community partners, Greenlee also helped facilitate Marion’s first Pride event, which featured a Pride parade around the library, a drag queen story time, a panel with local LGBTQIA+ agencies and more. 

In the summer of 2020, Marion and the surrounding areas were struck by a very powerful windstorm called a derecho, devastating the local community and forcing the library to close its doors permanently. In the storm’s wake, Greenlee worked to provide vital services to the community, helping building inspectors assess the structural safety of homes and staffing temporary technology locations across the city to provide internet access and FEMA assistance. She also started the Marion Derecho Digital Archive to collect the stories, photos and feelings of the community, which is available online and continues to grow. 

“Renee has shown her community that passion, perseverance, and patience are our greatest strengths,” her nominators wrote. “Children light up under her attention, teens laugh and discuss, and adults relax and listen. Her dedication to learning and people is something that shines through her and lights the way for others to follow in her path and continue the incredible work that she has begun.” 

Greenlee and this year’s nine other honorees will each receive a $5,000 cash prize, a $750 donation to their library, and complimentary registration to ALA’s LibLearnX. The virtual award ceremony will take place during the conference at 3:30 p.m. CT on Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022 and will be available to stream live at

Since the award’s inception in 2008, library users have shared more than 20,000 nominations detailing how librarians have gone above and beyond to promote literacy, expand access to technology and support diversity and inclusion in their communities. Information regarding previous award winners can be found on the I Love My Librarian website at  

Carnegie Corporation of New York generously sponsors the I Love My Librarian Award. The New York Public Library also supports the award. ALA administers the award through its Communications and Marketing Office, which promotes the value of libraries and librarians.  

About Carnegie Corporation of New York 
Carnegie Corporation of New York was established by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to promote the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding. In keeping with this mandate, the Corporation's work focuses on the issues that Andrew Carnegie considered of paramount importance: education, international peace, and a strong democracy. 

About The New York Public Library 
The New York Public Library is a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library serves nearly 17 million patrons who come through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at 

About the American Library Association 
The American Library Association 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 of libraries, advocating for the profession and the library’s role in enhancing learning and ensuring access to information for all. For more information, visit