Rhode Island Library Association Awards Librarians, Library Professionals, and Library Supporters
The Rhode Island Library Association (RILA) presented its annual awards at the RILA Annual Conference, which was held virtually on Thursday, May 28th, through Friday, May 29th, 2020 on Zoom. The theme for the conference was “Think Outside the Books,” and the recipients of this year’s awards exemplify the library community’s commitment to finding creative solutions to contemporary challenges.
“We had hoped to hold an in-person ceremony at some point to recognize the achievements of our award winners,” said RILA president Julie Holden, “but it might be many more months before we can do so. We want to formally congratulate this year’s recipients with the hope that we will be able to celebrate in person at a later date.”
The 2020 RILA Award winners are:
Library Champion Award: Ida D. McGhee (retired) founder of Cornucopia of RI (CORI), a library community of color, and advocate for the power of libraries to change our world.
Outstanding Librarian Award: Jana Stevenson, Director of Warwick Public Library.
Outstanding Library Paraprofessional Award: Emily Greene, Head of Interlibrary Loan at the University of Rhode Island’s Robert L. Carothers Library.
Trustee of the Year Award: Stephen Cicilline, Chair of the Greenville Public Library Board of Trustees.
Meritorious Friend of the Library Award: Michelle Lefort, for her volunteer work at Primrose Hill School Library, Hampden Meadows School Library, Barrington Middle School Library, and Barrington Public Library.
Special Thanks to Carla Weiss (Rhode Island College, retired) and Jim Kinnie (University of Rhode Island, retired) for their decades of service leading RILA’s Intellectual Freedom Committee. Through the years, Carla and Jim have led RILA in championing the value of intellectual freedom in addressing the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA), the USA PATRIOT Act, banned books, patron privacy and confidentiality, and net neutrality.
The Rhode Island Library Association is a professional organization that serves its members through career development, education, advocacy, networking partnerships, and legislative action.