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American Library Association. Awards Committee. | The American Library Association Archives

Name: American Library Association. Awards Committee.

Historical Note:

At its Midwinter Conference in December 1937, the American Library Association accepted the Joseph W. Lippincott Award and the James T. White Award to be bestowed upon younger librarians. At the same time it created a Jury on Awards to determine the recipients of the awards (1). In July 1941 the Jury on Awards Committee was discontinued and an ad hoc Committee on Awards appointed to study the whole question of awards (2). In 1947 the Awards Council, acting on the recommendation of the ad hoc committee, approved four awards to be given annually (3). The committee was to designate recipients for future awards (4).

At the 70th ALA Conference, the Council accepted the Awards Committee's (AC) recommendation that the Melvil Dewey Medal be awarded annually to a librarian for creative professional achievement. The Committee also recommended that they re-establish an award, to be known as the E.P. Dutton-John McCrae Award for library work with children and young people (5).

In June of 1954 the Awards Committee was established as a Board with five members, appointed for five-year terms, one member to be appointed annually. The Awards Board is the over-all policy making and coordinating agency regarding matters relating to awards created or sponsored by the ALA (6).

In 1974 the E.P. Dutton Award was eliminated due to lack of funding and a new policy was established that all unit awards were to be separated from general awards. The Awards Committee now makes recommendations to the Executive Board and the ALA Council regarding policy; reviews the appropriateness of existing awards; administers general awards and reviews and assists units on the awards procedure (7).



11-World Book Encyclopedia - ALA Goals Award


1. American Library Association Bulletin, April 1938, p. 295.

2. Ibid., September 1941, pp. P-31.

3. Ibid., September 1, 1947, p. 298.

4. Ibid., September 15, 1947, pp. P-19.

5. American Library Association, Proceedings of the 70th ALA Conference, (Chicago, American Library Association, 1952), p. 124.

6. American Library Association Bulletin, December 1955, p. 622.

7. American Library Association, ALA Handbook of Organizations and Membership Directory 1983-1984, (Chicago, American Library Association, 1983), p. 12.

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