ERT/Booklist Author Forum
Friday, January 24, 4:00 pm - 5:15 pm

In an unmissable ERT/Booklist Author Forum at 2014 ALA Midwinter Meeting, five acclaimed children’s book creators—Tonya Bolden, Brian Floca, Kadir Nelson, Steve Sheinkin, and Melissa Sweet—join fellow author and Booklist Books for Youth Senior Editor Ilene Cooper as she moderates the discussion about award-winning nonfiction for youth.

Steve Sheinkin Headshot

Steve Sheinkin

Steve Sheinkin is the award-winning author of several highly regarded books on American history, including The Notorious Benedict Arnold, which won the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults and the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award for nonfiction. His recent book Bomb was a Newbery Honor Book, National Book Award finalist, and winner of the Sibert Award as well as the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults. Visit Sheinkin online at www.stevesheinkin.com.

Sponsored by Macmillan Children's Publishing Group

Tonya Bolden Headshot

Tonya Bolden

Tonya Bolden’s many exemplary books for kids include Tell All the Children Our Story and Maritcha, an ALA Notable Book for Children and a Coretta Scott King Honor Book. She has written about George Washington Carver,Martin Luther King, W.E.B. Dubois, women’s history, Reconstruction America, and many other topics. She reveals more about her writing life and inspiration in this Book Links interview. Visit Bolden online at www.tonyaboldenbooks.com.

Sponsored by Abrams Books for Young Readers


Melissa Sweet Headshot

Melissa Sweet

Melissa Sweet has illustrated nearly 100 children’s books, from board books to picture books and nonfiction titles. Her collages and paintings have appeared in the New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, and more. After a childhood making paper dolls, and playing with paint–by–number kits, Colorforms, and a Spirograph, she now writes and illustrates picture books, using the same simple materials to construct her brilliant mixed-media collage illustrations. She has received a Caldecott Honor, for A River of Words by Jen Bryant, the Robert F. Sibert Medal for “Balloons over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of Macy’s Parade,” and two New York Times Best Illustrated citations. Read more about the research and craft Melissa Sweet brings to her illustrated biographies in this Book Links interview and visit Sweet online at www.melissasweet.net

Sponsored by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Brian Floca Headshot

Brian Floca

Brian Floca is the author and illustrator of Moonshot: The Flight of Apollo 11, a Robert F. Sibert Honor Book and a New York Times Best Illustrated Book; Lightship, also a Sibert Honor Book and a Booklist Top of the List winner—Youth Picture Book; The Racecar Alphabet, an ALA Notable Children’s Book, and this year’s Locomotive, which received a starred review in Booklist. He has illustrated Avi’s Poppy stories, Kate Messner’s Marty McGuire novels, and Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan’s Ballet for Martha: Making Appalachian Spring, a Sibert Honor Book and winner of the Orbis Pictus Award and a Booklist Editors’ Choice selection. Visit Floca online at www.brianfloca.com.

Sponsored by Simon & Schuster Children's Books

Kadir Nelson Headshot

Kadir Nelson

Kadir Nelson is one of the most accomplished, award-winning illustrators working today and is known for his stunning paintings depicting the African American experience. He won the 2012 Coretta Scott King Author Award and Illustrator Honor for Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African Americans and has received additional Caldecott Honors, Coretta Scott King Illustrator Awards, and an NAACP Image Award. Nelson’s authorial debut,We Are the Ship, was a New York Times bestseller, a Coretta Scott King Author Award winner, a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Book, and a Booklist Editors’ Choice selection. Visit Nelson online at www.kadirnelson.com.

Sponsored by HarperCollins Children's Books

All of the speakers will be signing outside of the ballroom immediately following the session. Be sure to stop by!

The Exhibits Round Table is pleased to sponsor the ERT/Booklist Author Forum as one of the many ways they collaborate with ALA staff and members to make the exhibits a dynamic part of ALA conferences. The ERT/Booklist Author Forum is immediately followed by the ribbon-cutting ceremony and exhibits opening reception.

Ribbon Cutting & Exhibits Opening Reception

The Exhibit Hall opens immediately following the Author Forum, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony featuring a brief welcome by ALA and Philadelphia dignitaries. The Exhibits Opening includes food, drink, and entertainment through the exhibit hall, giving exhibitors and attendees their first chance to network as the exhibits kick off. Enjoy the lively music provided by the Joseph A. Ferko String Band, boasting the most success­ful record in the history of Philadelphia’s annual Mummers Parade!

ALA Masters Series

Hear and talk to experts from across library specialties describe their latest in-house innovations in these 45-minute fast-paced sessions. Grab lunch or a snack and join an ALA Masters session to get insights into the hottest trends and how your colleagues are stepping up to them.

ReadersFirst Working Group
Sunday, January 26
11:45 - 12:30pm
The ReadersFirst Guide to Library E-Book Vendors
Members of ReadersFirst--a movement to improve e-book access and services for public library users--will introduce the organization and talk about the tool they’ve developed to help libraries evaluate ebook vendors, the ReadersFirst Guide to Library E-Book Vendors. Members of the ReadersFirst Working Group including Michael Santangelo, Electronic Resources Coordinator for BookOps--Library Services Center (Shared Technical Services of the Brooklyn Public Library and the New York Public Library) and Michael Blackwell, Manager, Dublin Branch, Columbus Metropolitan Library, will discuss the process of how the guide was built, how the criteria were created, and how vendors are scored according to these criteria. They will also address future plans for the ReadersFirst movement. Add this to your schedule!
Lisa Bunker Master Series SessionThe Library as a Catalyst for Innovation:
Case Studies of Library Entrepreneurship Centers and Programming
Monday, January 27
11:45am - 12:30pm

“Ideas + Community = Energy” is the motto for Lisa Bunker’s Catalyst Café at the Pima County Public Library where she is Social Media Librarian. In this ALA Masters session, Bunker will show you how the Café lives up to its motto and how despite being run on a shoestring, it has been a catalyst for new partnerships and projects at the library. She will describe how the Café has built capacity for the library’s newest project, a library-style incubator for small business, nonprofits, freelancers and artists. Entrepreneurship and co-working centers have already been established in a growing number of libraries nationwide, and this overview will provide inspiration and strategies for libraries not yet on board.  Add this session to your calendar.

Auditorium Speaker Series

A rare opportunity to hear leading authors, thought-leaders, and experts from adult and youth fiction, technology, and popular culture at these stimulating general sessions at key points throughout the Midwinter schedule.

Wes Moore
Saturday, January 25, 10:00 - 11:00am

Wes Moore - Auditorium Speaker

Wes Moore, bestselling author of The Other Wes Moore, is and has been on a remarkable quest to “find a life that matters.” As a youth advo­cate, he is committed to helping the parents, teachers, mentors, and advocates who serve youth in the U.S.—something that will sound familiar as well as inspiring to the librarians who hear him at ALA Midwinter Meeting.  

The Other Wes Moore, his first book, became an instant New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller. (A portion of all book proceeds for this title are being donated to City Year and the US Dream Academy.) His new book, The Work, weaves together stories of some remarkable changemakers he has met during his ongoing quest, people who found the meaning of their lives in serving others. The journey he describes takes him from studying International Relations as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford to serving a combat tour of duty in Afghanistan as Cap­tain in the United States Army, from Wall Street to the White House where he served as a fellow to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Moore, who overcame early academic and behavioral struggles before his many subsequent accomplishments, serves on the boards of the Iraq Afghanistan Vet­er­ans of Amer­ica (IAVA) and The Johns Hopkins University, and founded an orga­ni­za­tion called STAND! that works with Bal­ti­more youth involved in the crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem. He is also host of “Beyond Belief” on the Oprah Winfrey Network. 

Sponsored by Random House

Matthew Quick
Saturday, January 25 1:00 - 1:30pm
Matthew Quick"Hello,Librarians—it’s me, Matthew Quick . . .” In this short video, the bestselling author (also known simply as Q) of The Silver Linings Playbook, thanks librarians for “all that you do for the community” and talks about his next book in which he introduces a “Girlbrarian.” But you can go one better than YouTube at Midwinter Meeting—you can hear Quick live.

 “The Silver Linings Playbook,” Quick’s debut novel and a New York Times bestseller, has more than a half million copies in trade paperback and e-book, and was adapted into a blockbuster film nominated for eight Academy Awards, four Golden Globes and four Screen Actor Guild Awards. He is also the author of the YA novels “Sorta Like a Rock Star,” “Boy 21,” and “Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock.” Quick’s work has been translated into more than 20 languages and his accolades include a PEN/Hemingway Award Honorable Mention.

Quick’s upcoming novel, “The Good Luck of Right Now,” (Feb. 2014, HarperCollins) offers a funny and tender story about family, friendship, grief, acceptance, Richard Gere, and a “Girlbrarian:” “For 38 years, Bartholomew Neil has lived with his mother. When she gets sick and dies, he has no idea how to be on his own. . . . How does a man whose whole life has been grounded in his mom, Saturday mass, and the library learn how to fly? Bartholomew thinks he’s found a clue when he discovers a ‘Free Tibet’ letter from Richard Gere hidden in his mother’s underwear drawer.” (It’s no wonder that Read MoreDreamworks has already optioned the film rights.)

Sponsored by HarperCollins.

David Baldacci
Sunday, January 26 10:00 - 11:00am

David BaldacciDavid Baldacci is passionate about literacy and reading, believing that “the ability to read is the foundation for everyday life”—a message that will resonate with everyone at Midwinter Meeting. One of the world’s bestselling authors, there are more than 110 million copies of his novels in print in over 45 languages and 80 countries. He and his wife Michelle also created a foundation to combat illiteracy in the US—they believe that “virtually none of the major issues we face as a nation today can be successfully overcome until we eradicate illiteracy.”  

Baldacci left a well-established law practice in Washington, D.C. for his writing career. His first novel, “Absolute Power,” was made into a movie starring Clint Eastwood and Gene Hackman. His “King & Maxwell” series was made into a TV series and premiered on the TNT Network in June 2013. His most recent book for young readers, “Day of Doom” (2013, Scholastic) was the final book in the bestselling multi-platform “The 39 Clues(r): Cahills vs. Vespers” story arc. In March 2014, Scholastic will publish “The Finisher,” a fantasy novel for children that follows the adventures of a determined young heroine named Vega Jane who lives in an ordinary world with extraordinary secrets.

Although he is involved with several philanthropic organizations, Baldacci’s greatest efforts are dedicated to his family’s Wish You Well Foundation®  that supports family and adult literacy in the US by fostering and promoting the development and expansion of new and existing literacy and educational programs. You can visit Baldacci at his website.

Sponsored By Scholastic

ALA President's Program
Sunday, January 26, 3:30 - 5:30 pm

Andrew Slack PhotoAndrew Slack

High-demand speaker and energetic activist Andrew Slack offers you an outstanding opportunity to learn more about his work and how he sees it relating to libraries and their role in the community. Co-founder and executive director of the Harry Potter Alliance, Slack is currently developing the Imagine Better Network--"an unprecedented movement that goes beyond Harry Potter to all fandoms so that fantasy is no longer an escape from our world, but an invitation to change it for the better."

Under Slack’s Leadership, the Harry Potter Alliance has created over 170 chapters in schools and communities (and soon libraries) across the US and world. These chapters and hundreds of thousands of members have built libraries, sent five cargo planes to Haiti, and made great strides in both human rights and equality-based advocacy. As a Nathan Cummings Foundation Fellow for his innovation in social justice work, Slack is spending one year in New York City developing the Imagine Better Network. He has been profiled in Fast Company, NPR, NYT, the front cover of Forbes.com, and written for both the LA Times and CNN. He’s given two TEDx talk and served as a keynote speaker at the Nobel Peace Prize Forum.

Look for the Harry Potter Alliance booth in the Exhibit Hall (details available closer to January).

Slack will be welcomed by ALA President Barbara K. Stripling.

"News You Can Use": Policy, Research, Statistics, Technology

Experts from across library-related fields again offer the latest updates on policy, research, statistics, technology, and more, based on recent research, surveys, reports, legislation/ regulation, projects, beta trials, focus groups, and other data. Update providers include ALA Washington Office, other ALA divisions and offices, the ALA Digital Content Working Group, and a wide range of organizations such as IMLS, OCLC, DPLA, Pew Research Center, and ALISE.

The topics covered include: prospects and directions for ALA, libraries, and e-books in 2014; next steps for DPLA post-launch; YALSA’s report from the Digital Learning/MacArthur Foundation project; ACRL’s hearing on information literacy standards for higher education; Top Tech Trends from LITA; COA’s hearing on draft standards for accreditation; the latest PEW Internet Research Update findings relating to what Americans want—and don’t want—from their libraries; and others. Add these sessions to your schedule!  

Ask questions, explore options, make recommendations, examine ideas, and reflect on the implications with colleagues at the Unconference on Friday and Library Camp on Monday afternoon, during the facilitated conversation on Saturday afternoon, by signing up for the Kitchen-Table Conversations and participating in discussion groups on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, and using the Networking Uncommons area at any time to follow up or start a small-group discussion.

A continued focus on Community Engagement

ALA’s ongoing commitment to increased engagement between libraries and the communities they serve is highlighted in several related sessions and opportunities.

The ALA “Kitchen-Table” type Conversations Picking up where the “Kitchen Table Conversations” left off at Annual Conference, these multiple informal conversations in groups of up to 16 will dig more deeply into what the participants want ALA to be as a community. Sign up to participate.

Talk About Innovation: TEDx @Your Library  Saturday, January 26, 10:30–11:30am. Chrystie Hill, Meg Omainsky, and Teri Skillman share success stories and strategies for conducting TEDx events that have energized and empowered community conversations in the library in a panel discussion moderated by ALA President Barbara K. Stripling. 

“Turning Outward to Lead Change in Your Community: Aspirations” Saturday, January 25, 1:00-2:30pm. Cheryl Gorman and Carlton Sears facilitate an interactive discussion on leveraging your trusted position in the community to engage people on issues that matter. 

Libraries Transforming Communities: An Initiative Update Sunday, January 26, 8:30-10:00am. Presenters Maureen Sullivan and Rich Harwood give an update on the ground-breaking initiative announced one year ago, since when more than 300 library leaders have participated in training and utilized community engagement tools to support their efforts. 

For the full list of community engagement-related sessions and events, search under “Civic Engagement” in the Scheduler.

Youth Media Awards
Monday, January 27

Each year the American Library Association honors books, videos, and other outstanding materials for children and teens. Recognized worldwide for the high quality they represent, the ALA Youth Media Awards, including the prestigious Newbery, Caldecott, Printz, and Coretta Scott King Book Awards, guide parents, educators, librarians, and others in selecting the best materials for youth. Selected by committees composed of librarians and other literature and media experts, the awards encourage original and creative work in the field of children’s and young adult literature and media.

The 2014 award winners will be announced on Monday, January 27, in the Convention Center. A live Webcast of the award announcements will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Coverage of the award winners will be published in the Monday issue of Cognotes available in the convention center after the announcement. Award press releases will be posted online on the ALA homepage at ala.org. Exact times to be announced closer to January.

Click Here to watch the Youth Media Awards (YMA) 2014 Trailer

Arthur Curley Memorial Lecture
Saturday, January 25, 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Ishmael Beah Photo

Ishmael Beah

Don't miss the opportunity to be inspired and moved by human rights advocate and bestselling author Ishmael Beah whose first book A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier has been published in over thirty languages and has helped shine an international spotlight on critical issues related to children and war.

At the age of twelve, Beah fled attacking rebels. By thirteen, he’d been picked up by the government army, and though gentle by nature, found that he was capable of truly terrible acts. Eventually released by the army and sent to a UNICEF rehabilitation center, he struggled to regain his humanity and to reenter the world of civilians, who viewed him with fear and suspicion. His first book is seen as a tale of redemption and hope. Beah crosses over to fiction in his forthcoming novel, Radiance of Tomorrow (January 2014, Macmillan), which is already garnering rave reviews.

Ishmael Beah was born in 1980 in Sierra Leone, West Africa. He has been published in  The New York Times Magazine, Vespertine Press, LIT, Parabola, and numerous academic journals. He is a UNICEF Ambassador and Advocate for Children Affected by War; a member of the Human Rights Watch Children’s Rights Advisory Committee; an advisory board member at the Center for the Study of Youth and Political Violence at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville; visiting scholar at the Center for International Conflict Resolution at Columbia University; visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Center for the Study of Genocide, Conflict Resolution, and Human Rights at Rutgers University; cofounder of the Network of Young People Affected by War (NYPAW); and president of the Ishmael Beah Foundation. He has spoken before the United Nations, the Council on Foreign Relations, and many panels on the effects of war on children. Time magazine named A Long Way Gone as number three on their list of the top ten nonfiction books of 2007.

Sponsored by Macmillan

This lecture series commemorates Arthur Curley’s lifelong dedication to the principles of intellectual freedom and free public access to information. A champion of the arts and of the library’s role as a center that can transform the community, Curley was director of the Boston Public Library and served as ALA president.

Book Buzz Theater

Come hear the latest “Buzz” about the newest titles from your favorite publishers all in one easy-to-find location on the Exhibit Hall Floor. Find out who is presenting and when. 

Discussion Groups

The Midwinter Meeting features more than 200 Discussion Groups—more loosely organized sessions on broad and timely topics, each sponsored by an ALA division, round table, or office. These generally highly interactive sessions may or may not have a speaker and are more open discussions than informational.


Committee meetings are held during Midwinter to do the business of the association. Some meetings will be listed "closed" when they are discussing private information, but most meetings are open to any attendee, and may be a good way to learn about the business of ALA and its divisions.

Award-Winning Products at the ALA Store

Find the ALA Store near the registration area, offering products that meet the widest range of your promotional and continuing education/professional development needs. With plenty of new and bestselling items available, make sure to carve out some time in your schedule to stop by!

ALA Graphics highlights new posters, bookmarks, and incentives, including the latest additions to the READ campaign and posters and bookmarks featuring popular characters. As always, the conference t-shirt will sell out fast—arrive early to get your size.

Follow us for updates for updates on author/illustrator signings, special offers, and more: ALA Graphics on Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr. ALA Editions on Twitter and Facebook.

Prices at the Conference Store automatically reflect the ALA Member discount, so there’s no need to dig out your membership card. And remember that every dollar you spend at the ALA Store helps support library advocacy, awareness, and other key programs and initiatives!

ALA Membership Pavilion—The Place for Information

A favorite stop where you can learn how membership can enhance your career, connect with colleagues, and get information to help you improve library services to your community. For our newest members, meet colleagues who will help you find ways to get more involved in the association, supporting your career and the rest of the profession. ALA volunteer members and staff are ready to help answer your questions about your membership, the conference, and the many things happening at ALA. With information and displays from ALA divisions, round tables, and offices, the ALA Membership Pavilion is your one-stop place to learn and get connected.

Networking Uncommons

Make the connections you want at the Networking Uncommons space in the Convention Center. It’s a dedicated area where you can gather in small groups to have a quick meeting, polish your presentation, follow up on a discussion, or just recharge your batteries. The area features tables, chairs, free convention center wifi, and a projector and screen, as well as some gadgets in case you want to push content out in real-time. Sign up for a time slot if you want to plan ahead—otherwise just show up. During open times, the area is up for grabs, although it's big enough that multiple groups can use it at once, even when someone has scheduled something. You can also check the topics each day to see what interests you. Learn more and sign up.

Unconference and Midwinter Library Camp

Join the Unconference on Friday and Library Camp on Monday afternoon to ask questions, explore options, make recommendations, examine ideas, and reflect on the implications of updates, conversations, and what you’ve learned at Midwinter.

The Unconference takes place on Friday, 9:00am -12:00pm. This participant-guided experience brings the unstructured conversations people often have between conference sessions into the conference itself. Unconferences are organized by the crowd, and are about sharing the knowledge and passion we have for our profession and taking what we learn into the world to make a difference.

Round out your experience at the ALA Midwinter end-of-Meeting Library Camp on Monday. Attendees will get together to talk about anything library- or conference-related with a focus on reflecting on what inspired you at the 2014 Midwinter Meeting. Come prepared to share your experiences and/or lead an informal discussion on a topic of your choice. Everyone is welcome!


Think Fit - Thank you to Innovative Interfaces for their continued support!

Visit Innovative at Midwinter Booth #1631

Primary Sponsor:

 Innovative Interfaces Logo

Dine Around Philadelphia

The program has been revamped and put into your hands!

Visit the website below for more details, and to sign up for your Dine Around seat.  This is a great way to meet colleagues, network off-site, and visit popular restaurants of the area.

Dine Around Website

ALA JobLIST Placement Center

Provided by the ALA Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment (HRDR), the ALA JobLIST Placement Center will be open Saturday and Sunday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. There will be an orientation on Saturday, January 26 at 8:30 am in the Placement Center and an open house on Sunday, 10:30-12 noon.

Job seekers should register and search for jobs on the ALA JobLIST website. All services are free to job seekers. Registration is not required, but is recommended. Registration will give registered employers access to your resume information. It will also allow for direct communication between job seekers and employers.

Employers who want to post positions should post them on the ALA JobLIST website. Employers who want to use the interviewing facilities must have an active ad placed on JobLIST at the time you schedule an interview. Employers who want a booth in the Placement Center should contact Beatrice Calvin at bcalvin@ala.org, or 800-545-2433 ext. 4280.

Exhibits Closing & Wrap Up/Rev Up Celebration

Join us Monday afternoon to close the exhibits and rev up for the Annual Conference in Las Vegas!

James McBride Wrap Up Rev UpWrapping up Midwinter and revving up for Annual Conference, bestselling author James McBride and his gospel quintet will have you on your feet with their mix of exuberant spirituals and jazz renditions of classic gospel music. The band will combine selected readings with music inspired, and in some cases even sung in the nineteenth century, by the abolitionist John Brown, as they present McBride’s 2013 National Book Award-winning novelThe Good Lord Bird. The novel tells the story of a young boy born a slave who joins John Brown’s antislavery crusade—and who must pass as a girl to survive. With McBride on saxophone, the band also features Keith Robinson on guitar, Trevor Exter on bass, Show Tyme Brooks on drums, Adam Faulk on piano, and the whole band on vocals.

Sponsored By: Riverhead Books

Attendees can start Wrap Up/Rev Up celebrations any time on Monday in the Exhibit Hall with discount sales and special giveaways in exhibitors’ booths. Prizes including a free registration for 2014 Annual Conference in Las Vegas will be given away after the performance. Add it to your schedule now!

Get Excited about Philadelphia!

Philadelphia has lots to offer! Visit the Convention and Visitors website for ideas to help you plan.