The Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction, established in 2012, recognize the best fiction and nonfiction books for adult readers published in the U.S. in the previous year and serve as a guide to help adults select quality reading material. They are the first single-book awards for adult books given by the American Library Association and reflect the expert judgment and insight of library professionals who work closely with adult readers. The winners (one for fiction, one for nonfiction) are announced at an event at the ALA Midwinter Meeting; winning authors receive a $5,000 cash award. For more information on award seals, please visit the ALA store.
A longlist comprised of no more than 50 titles is released in the fall. Six finalists, three fiction and three nonfiction, are announced in November. The winners are announced at the RUSA Book and Media Awards Ceremony in February. All honored titles are nominated by the members of the selection committee. The awards do not accept submissions.
Who Selects the Winners
The longlist, shortlist, and eventual winners reflect the expertise of a seven-member selection committee of library professionals from across the country who work closely with adult readers. The annually appointed selection committee includes one member of the American Booksellers Association, three Booklist editors or contributors, and three RUSA members. All honored titles are nominated by the members of the selection committee. The awards do not accept submissions.
The 2023 Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence selection committee includes the following experts who work closely with adult readers:
- Stephen Sposato (chair) is the Content Curation Manager for Chicago Public Library.
- Clancey D'Isa is the Director of Strategy and Development for the Seminary Co-op Bookstores (Chicago), the first not-for-profit bookstores whose mission is bookselling.
- Margaret Quamme is a freelance journalist and Booklist reviewer based in Lancaster, Ohio.
- Stephanie Sendaula is a Programming and Outreach Specialist at LibraryLinkNJ in Trenton, NJ.
- Becky Spratford is a Reader's Advisory Specialist and Booklist reviewer based in Chicagoland. She runs the critically acclaimed blog, RA for All.
- Sarah Barbara Watstein serves as Dean, Lemieux Library and McGoldrick Learning Commons at Seattle University, and has served on numerous ALA and RUSA book, print, and media award committees during her more than 40-year career in libraries.
- Mary Callaghan "Cal" Zunt is a librarian in Cleveland, Ohio. Previously she has served as Chair of ALA's Stonewall Book Award and a several-term member of the Notable Books Council.
Supporting the Awards
The Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction are made possible by a grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York in recognition of Andrew Carnegie’s deep belief in the power of books and learning to change the world, and are co-sponsored by ALA’s Booklist and the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA).
About Carnegie Corporation of New York
Carnegie Corporation of New York was established in 1911 by Andrew Carnegie 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: international peace, the advancement of education and knowledge, and the strength of our democracy.
Booklist is the book review magazine of the American Library Association, considered an essential collection development and readers' advisory tool by thousands of librarians for more than 100 years. Booklist Online includes a growing archive of 160,000+ reviews available to subscribers as well as a wealth of free content offering the latest news and views on books and media.
About Reference and User Services Association (RUSA)
The Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) is a member community engaged in advancing the practices of connecting people to resources, information services, and collections, building relationships among members from all types of libraries, encouraging openness, innovation, and idea sharing, and promoting excellence in library services and resources.
Established in 1876, the American Library Association (ALA) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization created to provide leadership in the transformation and the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services as well as the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.