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Read conference reports from Conable Scholar Mack Freeman & President Julius Jefferson

Posted By Jonathan M. Kelley, Monday, July 21, 2014
The 2014 ALA Annual Conference in Las Vegas was successful by nearly all measures (although we can't say for sure whether that extended to the tables). We're pleased to share with you two reports connected with the Freedom to Read Foundation:

Click here to read FTRF President Julius C. Jefferson, Jr.'s report to the ALA Council. Included is information about our litigation efforts, developing issues that could turn into future litigation, and the status of FTRF's various programs.

Click here to read John "Mack" Freeman's report as recipient of the Conable Conference Scholarship.

From a staff perspective, it was a real pleasure meeting and getting to know Mack. It was great to be able to introduce him to past Conable Scholars as well! Please let any new librarians or library school students know about this opportunity when it presents itself again early next year. We've got a great group going!

Tags:  ALA  Annual Conference  John Mack Freeman  Julius Jefferson 

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ALA Council passes resolutions in memory of Forsman, Shank

Posted By Jonathan M. Kelley, Tuesday, July 9, 2013

During the 2013 ALA Annual Conference in Chicago last week, the American Library Association Council passed two memorial resolutions commemorating FTRF Roll of Honor winners, Carolyn Forsman and Russell Shank:


Whereas the American Library Association (ALA) and the Freedom to Read Foundation lost a valued member and leader on January 19, 2013; and

Whereas Carolyn Forsman was a tireless and outspoken advocate of intellectual freedom and the freedom to read and received the Freedom to Read Foundation 2001 Roll of Honor Award; and

Whereas she was in the first class of doctoral students in library science at the University of Maryland, 1969-72; and

Whereas she served as a librarian at Vallejo Public Library and the Washington, DC Public Library; and

Whereas her excellent visualization skills and creative instinct led to jewelry that "spins, sparkles, flips, flashes, glows, winks, snaps & slinks” and an ALA booth that was a true pioneer of "maker space”; and 

Whereas she used her creativity to establish an ALA Exhibits booth to sell her jewelry and donate the proceeds to the Freedom to Read Foundation: now, therefore, be it 

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members: 

  1. recognizes the significant contributions of Carolyn Forsman to the cause of intellectual freedom and librarianship; and 
  2. extends its sincerest condolences to her friends and family.


Whereas the American Library Association (ALA) and the Freedom toRead Foundation lost a renowned member and leader on June 26, 2012 with the death of Russell Shank; and

Whereas Russell Shank served from 1967 to 1977 as the Smithsonian Institution’s first-ever director of libraries; and

Whereas he served as the first-ever vice chancellor for library and information services and planning, and in other leadership positions, at the UCLA Libraries from 1977-1989; and

Whereas he served as the President of the American Library Association from 1978-79, during which time he joined ALA’s Council in supporting the passage of the Equal Rights Amendment; and

Whereas he was a staunch defender of intellectual freedom and received the Freedom to Read Roll of Honor in 1990; and 

Whereas he was an extremely kind, sensitive person and in spite of his health challenges, never lost his sense of humor: now, therefore, be it 

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:

  1. Recognizes the significant contributions of Russell Shank over the course of his distinguished career and mourns his death; and         
  2. Extends its sincerest condolences to his friends and family.

Tags:  ALA  Annual Conference  Carolyn Forsman  Roll of Honor  Russell Shank 

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Amanda Meeks wins 2013 Conable Conference Scholarship

Posted By Jonathan M. Kelley, Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Amanda Meeks of Chicago was named the recipient of the 2013 Gordon M. Conable Conference Scholarship. Check out our press release about her, and meet and congratulate her in person next month at the FTRF Member Reception at the Hilton Chicago. (You can also meet Sara Paretsky!) There's no charge to attend the reception.

Since graduating last year from Emporia State, Amanda has become involved in the volunteer-run Read/Write Library (formerly the Chicago Underground Library), which collects Chicago-area books, magazines, zines, journals, newspapers, broadsides, and art books. She'll be talking about that and other projects at her "ignite" session on Monday, July 1, 11:30 a.m.–noon at McCormick Place.

Congrats, Amanda!

Tags:  Amanda Meeks  Annual Conference  Conable Scholarship  Read/Write Library 

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Sara Paretsky to join FTRF at Member Reception next month!

Posted By Jonathan M. Kelley, Thursday, May 16, 2013

Famed novelist and popular Chicagoan Sara Paretsky will be a special guest of honor at the 2013 FTRF Annual Member Reception on Thursday, June 27.  The reception will be held from 5:00-6:30 p.m. at the Hilton Chicago, Joliet Room, following the FTRF Board of Trustees meeting.

Paretsky is a longtime supporter of the Freedom to Read Foundation and intellectual freedom, and has been a featured speaker on the issue at a number of events - including last year's Dominican University McCusker Memorial Lecture, co-sponsored by FTRF, and ALA's 2008 Banned Books Week Read-Out. She's best known as author of the V.I. Warshawski series of detective novels.

Attendees will also have the opportunity to meet the recipient of the 2013 Gordon M. Conable Conference Scholarship (the winner will be announced in this space next week), and learn about the latest on the Foundation's cases and other activities.  If you're not a member, you can join now or at the door.

We hope those of you attending #ALA2013 or otherwise in the Chicagoland area will join us for this very special event!

Meanwhile, check out Sara's video from last year's Banned Books Week Virtual Read-Out!

Tags:  Annual Conference  Banned Books Week  member reception  Sara Paretsky 

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