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Farmer To Receive Librarian Recognition Award

Published: June 1, 2015

The Library Instruction Round Table (LIRT) of the American Library Association (ALA) has chosen CSULB’s Lesley Farmer as the 2015 recipient of its Librarian Recognition Award. Farmer, a professor of Educational Technology and Media Leadership at CSULB, was chosen based on her contributions at the international, national, state and local levels in support of information literacy and instruction.

Farmer will receive the LIRT Librarian Recognition Award on June 28, at the ALA annual conference in San Francisco.

The Librarian Recognition Award was created to recognize an individual’s contribution to the development, advancement and support of information literacy and instruction.

“I have worked for 20 years in the area of information literacy and instruction, especially with an eye on gendered issues, so it was such an honor to be recognized for this long-term effort,” said Farmer, who also serves as department chair for advanced studies in education and counseling and is the teacher librarian program coordinator. “This award enabled me to look back at this work, which reminded me of the extent of information literacy and its changes over the years. Yet the underlying ideas–and the need for information literacy–remain as vital as ever.”

Farmer has presented widely and written dozens of articles, book chapters, and eight books dealing with information literacy. Her latest books include Introduction to Reference and Information Services in Today’s School Library (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014) and Library Services for Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ALA, 2013).

She co-chaired the U.S. committee to develop a core list of information literacy resources for a global information literacy publication and served on the Association of College and Research Libraries Task Force to develop a new information literacy framework for higher education. Farmer also maintains a wiki on digital citizenship and a blog on internet learning activities for families.

Michael Saar, chair of the award selection committee, noted Farmer’s wide range of influence, including her strong publication record and participation and leadership in a variety of committees, as determining factors in the committee’s selection of her as this year’s winner.

Farmer’s emphasis on the importance of information literacy in instruction has aided librarians at both the K-12 and university levels, beginning in 1981 while she was at Virginia Commonwealth University and spanning through her most recent work at CSULB. She has provided training on teaching information literacy to librarians in the United Arab Emirates and has presented on information literacy-related topics internationally in numerous countries including France, Canada and Australia.

Lesley Farmer

She was instrumental in the development of the California Model School Library Standards and the Association of College and Research Libraries/American Association of School Librarians (ACRL/AASL) information literacy online toolkit and is serving on the ACRL Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education Task Force.

The Library Instruction Round Table began in 1977 with the intent to bring together librarians who provide library instruction across all types of libraries–academic, public, school, and special libraries. This year marks the second time the Library Recognition Award has been awarded.

Find out more about LIRT, its mission, and the awards on the organization’s website.

–Shayne Schroeder