Public Library Association

America’s aging public library infrastructure requires billions for construction, renovation: New data analysis

ALA pushes Build America’s Libraries Act of 2021 to address need

WASHINGTON, D.C. – America’s approximately 17,000 public libraries, which receive 1.3 billion visits each year, need an estimated $32 billion for construction and renovation, according to a data brief released today by the American Library Association (ALA).

PLA now accepting proposals for PLA 2022 Conference

CHICAGO — Today, the Public Library Association (PLA) officially opened the Call for Proposals for educational sessions to be presented at its next biennial conference, to be held Mar. 23-25, 2021 in Portland, Oregon. The PLA 2022 Conference will highlight innovative work and ideas that address the core challenges facing public libraries and their communities today.

Mary Davis Fournier named PLA executive director

CHICAGO — The American Library Association (ALA) announced today the appointment of Mary Davis Fournier as executive director, Public Library Association (PLA), a division of ALA. Her first day in her new role will be Monday, June 14.

ALA prepares for new Emergency Connectivity Fund implementation

Today, the Federal Communications Commission released the Order establishing the Emergency Connectivity Fund, which was adopted unanimously on May 10*. The $7.17 billion program, funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, will enable schools and libraries to purchase laptop and tablet computers, Wi-Fi hotspots, and broadband connectivity for students, school staff, and library patrons in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.

PLA, AT&T team up to bring digital literacy training to families

CHICAGO – The Public Library Association (PLA), a division of the American Library Association, and AT&T have announced a collaboration to improve digital literacy and promote broadband adoption among families and communities, particularly those who are newly connected to the internet and navigating home schooling, employment and other activities made challenging due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

PLA, public libraries and Microsoft Corp. extend upskilling efforts for in-demand jobs

CHICAGO – The Public Library Association (PLA), supported by Microsoft Corp., is promoting tools to help job seekers in high-growth careers. PLA’s Skilling for Employment Post COVID-19 initiative connects public libraries and their communities nationwide to specialized online training and certifications, and today adds new targeted programs in Cleveland, El Paso, Memphis, and New York City.

2021 Public Library Association election results

CHICAGO — Today, the Public Library Association (PLA) announced the results of its 2021 Election. Voting was available from March 8 through April 7, and open to all PLA members in good standing.

The members elected Dr. Maria Taesil Hudson McCauley, director of Libraries at the Cambridge (Massachusetts) Public Library to the office of 2022-2023 PLA president.

Free training to boost Census data literacy skills, improve planning and programs

CHICAGO – The Public Library Association (PLA) is launching a new project on Census Data Literacy, in partnership with the Public Policy and Advocacy office (PPA) of the American Library Association.

New PLA Benchmark Briefings allows for library peer comparison

CHICAGO —The Public Library Association (PLA) has launched the Benchmark Briefings to support public libraries’ access and use of data. The free resource translates data from the Public Libraries Survey (PLS) conducted by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) into accessible infographics to ease library peer comparison across key characteristics.