California Library Awards

Reforma Names California Librarian 2008 Librarian of the Year

The National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking or Reforma has named Ron Rodriguez the 2008 Arnulfo D. Trejo Librarian of the Year. Rodriguez, who has worked in California libraries since 1984, is Access Services Unit Head in the Pollak Library at California State University at Fullerton. In 1989 Rodriguez was one of ten California individuals selected to participate in the California State Library's Transition into Management program.

Rodriguez says he is “humbled and honored” to receive the Reforma award.  “I don't see myself as a Reforma superstar,” Rodriguez says, “but as one librarian helping to promote the various issues Reforma has championed over the years. Looking back, some of the issues in 1982 are still ‘in progress’ today such as increasing the number of Latina/Latino librarians and encouraging graduate library schools to consider the diversity of our country’s population in the courses offered. These and other issues translate to more work ahead for the organization.”

Rodriguez shares the award with his early mentors.  “Certainly I would not be a librarian today if it wasn't for Karin Duran of California State University at Northridge (CSUN) and Albert Tovar of the City of Azusa Public Library,” he says. “They inspired me in 1973 and 1977 respectively.  John Ayala, retired Dean Emeritus of the Fullerton College Library, sparked in me an interest in the managerial side of academic libraries and that is still quite alive!”

For more information about Reforma and its various programs please visit

California Preservation Program Awarded One of 19 National IMLS 2008 Connecting to Collections: Statewide Planning Grants

The California Preservation Program, a statewide preservation program administered by the Peninsula Library System, has been awarded a 2008 Connecting to Collections: Statewide Planning grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). The Peninsula Library System’s program was one of only 19 libraries, museums, and archives nationwide to receive a grant.

Libraries, museums, and archives use the IMLS Connecting to Collections: Statewide Planning grants to create conservation plans for their collections. The California Preservation Program will undertake a one-year statewide planning project to create a shared vision for preservation among heritage institutions in California including 1300 museums, 5000 libraries and archives, 125 historical societies and over 500 state park facilities. The California Preservation Program will partner with the California Association of Museums, the California State Library, California State Parks, and Historic Monterey in this effort.

For the full IMLS press release, please visit:

For more information about the California Preservation Program, please visit

PLA Grow Your Own @ Your Library Institutional Scholarship Winner is Kern County Library

The Public Library Association (PLA) awarded the Kern County Library an $8,000 grant as part of PLA’s highly competitive "Grow Your Own @ Your Library" Institutional Scholarship, a pilot program which addresses the education needs of public library staff working toward a Master’s degree in library and information science.

Kern County Library was one of eight libraries nationwide to receive the tuition assistance for staff members’ graduate studies in library science. The award also funds staff members’ attendance at a PLA Conference. Winning libraries may distribute funds to more than one staff member.

The PLA awarded one library from each of its Public Library Data Service (PLDS) population categories. Kern County Library won for the 500,000-999,999 service population category.

Kern County “fortunate” to grow librarians at home

Diane Duquette, Director of Libraries, Kern County Library says of the PLA award, “Ironically, winning a PLA grant for growing our own professional librarians in Kern County is much akin to growing our own fruits and vegetables where most of our staff resides and work; it’s best to draw sustenance from your immediate surroundings!”

Duquette goes on to say, “While much of the world depends on imports from our county, one of the largest exporters of agricultural products in the world, and one where the largest organic farm resides, we are indeed fortunate to receive a “Grow Your Own @ Your Library’ Institutional Scholarship award to help our own paraprofessional staff in the ranks and file continue to ‘grow’ to become library leaders of the future as they work towards their ultimate goal of obtaining their master’s degree in library and information science. On their behalf, I am ecstatic to receive this enabling grant and to forward our appreciation to PLA for this highly competitive nationwide award.”

Sherry Gomez, Deputy Director of Libraries for Kern County, says “It’s great that through the generous PLA award we can support our talented staff in their efforts to become tomorrow’s librarians. We are honored to have been selected in this population category out of all the applicants nationwide.”

Gomez reports the Kern County district includes 24 branches, 2 bookmobiles and the main Beale Memorial Library in Bakersfield. “We currently have one staff person pursuing his MLIS online through San Jose State University, and he has been in the Urban Libraries Council Scholars program for which funding wraps-up this summer. Now, he will continue to receive money through ‘Grow Your Own @ Your Library.’ We have 3-4 other staff in the process of applying to online library schools so we anticipate 4-5 staff will be doing graduate work, a wonderful accomplishment,” Gomez says.

For more information about the “Grow Your Own @ Your Library” Institutional Scholarship please visit PLA is a division of the American Library Association. 



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