The Chief Librarian’s reporT Library News Highlights May 23, 2012


sTaff MeMbers Win aWards for ouTsTanding Leadership…

• Marcia Harrington, head of the DCPL Adult Literacy Resource Center, is one of five winners of the 2012 Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation Awards for “distinguished DC government employees.” The award, announced by The George Washington University Center for Excellence in Public Leadership, said, “The selection panel saw an exceptional public servant who has made a significant contribution in service to the government and the residents of Washington, DC.” • Desire Grogan, DCPL’s Computer Training Coordinator, was named a Finalist for the 2012 Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation Awards in the category of “distinguished DC government employees.” • Patrick Timony, the Adaptive Technology Librarian in the Adaptive Services Division, is the recipient of the fifth annual Raymond Von Dran Memorial Award from The Catholic University of America School of Library and Information Science’s Alumni Board. The award is given to an alumnus/ alumna who exemplifies the qualities of innovation, collaboration, and leadership. • Eboni Stokes, Children’s Librarian, was elected ALA Councilor-at-Large for a three-year term. • Elissa Miller, Director of Collections, was one of two librarians in the U.S. to be invited, all expenses paid, by the Colombia Government Trade Bureau to attend the 25th International Book Fair in Bogota. Ms. Miller met with editors, publishers, authors, and illustrators to learn about trends the group anticipates in libraries and the publishing industry. • Rebecca Renard just earned a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from The Catholic University of America. At graduation, Rebecca was honored by the faculty as Information Science Graduate of the Year.


… and The buiLding prograM generaTes an aWard for exCeLLenCe
Philip G. Freelon was honored with the 2012 Design Guild Award by The Design Guild of The College of Design at North Carolina State University in Research Triangle Park. The Design Guild jury cited Mr. Freelon’s remarkable contributions to architecture, art, and design, most notably his impact on public sector buildings. Mr. Freelon designed the Anacostia and Tenley-Friendship Libraries. I was honored to introduce him at the awards ceremony.
Document #8 Board of Library Trustees Meeting May 23, 2012


Not just for a day, but for a full week of activities at many neighborhood libraries and MLK Library. Attendance totaled 1,173 for 21 different programs offered at 13 locations. Programs were created by staff and by professional and communitygroup performers. There were special story times, led by El Zol Radio personality Patricia de Lima, author and illustrator Lulu Delacre, and the DC Office of Latino Affairs. There was bilingual song, dance, and drumming with ¡Uno, Dos, Tres Con Andrés!, Mexican and Latin American Dance by the Maru Montero Dance Company, and “The Cat and the Seagull” presented by Teatro de la Luna. This festive program promotes literacy as it celebrates children of all backgrounds. Robin Imperial, neighborhood library manager at Mt. Pleasant and Petworth, organized the 2012 El Día. ¡Muchas gracias, Robin!

¡eL día de Los niños/eL día de Los Libros esTá aquí!


neW naTionaL earLy LiTeraCy parTnership LaunChed

The Children’s Division at MLK Library was the site of a joint press conference led by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Institute of Museum and Library Services to announce a collaboration between Head Start and public libraries across the country to boost children’s early literacy skills. The wide reach of the Head Start network gives this partnership the potential to reach more than one million children.


ToMMy’s TraveLing book CLub parks aT peTWorTh Library

The partnership between Councilmember Tommy Wells and the Federation of Friends—“Tommy’s Traveling Book Club”—arrived at the Petworth Library to read and discuss The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963, by Christopher Paul Curtis, a novel for middle graders. Councilmember Wells, who was born in Texas, but grew up in Homewood, Alabama, led the discussion. The novel, which is both funny and tragic, won the Newbery Award and the Coretta Scott King Honors.


Cleveland Park Library staff members Barbara Gauntt, Patty Reeber, and Jackie Mikolaski enlisted the enthusiastic help of 27 performers for an all-day Read-In for patrons of all ages. Approximately 275 patrons came for the fun. Here are the highlights:

dC read-in ZeaL aT CLeveLand park Library

• Local authors Jennifer Allison, Pamela Ehrenberg, Anna El-Eini, Caroline Hickey, and Katherine Marsh led a program of readings and discussion for teens. • Three generations of the Thom-Veliz family read aloud; 8-year-old Kia stole the show as she read The Lorax. • The award-winning one act play by Kelli Herod, “Break Up, Break In, Break Out,” was read by the author and original performers. The local Devonshire Players performed “Greater Tuna.” • David Greenfieldboyce of the Mt. Pleasant Children’s Puppet Hour presented “A Bunny Shouldn’t Ever Have a Fox for a Pet,” and Patty Reeber presented a shadow puppet show of “Martina the Beautiful Cockroach.”


an inTeresTing TWisT on WoMen’s hisTory MonTh

Several libraries hosted women-centered programs during Women’s History Month. While not detracting from lectures and discussions that honored bravery, activism, and freedom of expression, the highlight this year might be the “Sisters in Crime” event at Takoma Park Library. Susan Froetchel, mystery writer and Takoma Park resident, volunteered to be a Library staffer for a full Saturday to highlight that “Booksellers and Librarians Solve Mysteries Every Day.” “Sisters in Crime” is an international organization founded to support the professional development of women writing crime fiction, and Ms. Froetschel gave writing advice to interested folks of all ages.


peW sTudies The sTaTus of e-reading

How significant is the impact of e-devices on our reading habits? The Pew Study of 2011 found that “some 43% of Americans age 16 or older say they have either read an e-book in the past year or have read other long-form content, such as magazines… in digital format…” The Pew survey yielded many notable findings, the highlights of which follow: • Readers of e-books are “relatively avid readers of books in all formats… The average reader of e-books has read 24 books (the mean number) in the past 12 months, compared with an average of 15 books by a non-e-book consumer.” • “Thirty percent of those who read e-content say they now spend more time reading, and owners of tablets and e-book readers particularly stand out as reading more now.” • “While e-book reading is markedly growing, printed books still dominate the world of book readers. In a December 2011 survey, 72% of American adults said they had read a printed book and 11% listened to an audiobook in the previous year, compared with the 17% of adults who read an e-book.” • “… [W]e found that a majority of print readers (54%) and readers of e-books (61%) prefer to purchase their own copies of these books. Meanwhile, most audiobook listeners prefer to borrow their audiobooks…”


The man was not a leading citizen, nor was he wealthy, nor was he noted for having unusual talents, but two well-respected artists painted Mamout Yarrow’s portrait, one in 1819 and the other in 1822. One hangs in the Atwater Kent Museum in Philadelphia, and the other was returned recently to its home in the Peabody Room at the Georgetown Library. Mr. Yarrow was an African American, a Muslim, a slave who became free in 1796, and a man who did something that was quite unusual: Four years after becoming a freedman, he bought his own home—on Dent Place in Georgetown. The Washington Post ran a comic strip called “Flashbacks,” and the final installment featured the 1822 portrait of Mr. Yarrow on display at the Georgetown Library.

Mr. yarroW CoMes hoMe

In 1912, Japan gave 3,000 cherry trees to the District of Columbia and their beauty and grace fueled special celebrations for young Library patrons this centennial year:

10. a gifT inspires speCiaL evenTs for Teens and ChiLdren

• At Lamond-Riggs, teens made Japanese scrolls painted with cherry blossoms and kanji symbols. • Upstairs at Northwest 1, teens drew random words from a basket and created haiku. Downstairs, children crafted three-dimensional cherry blossoms and listened to Japanese folktales. • Petworth hosted a National Geographic Museum presentation related to the museum’s exhibit, “Samurai: Warrior Transformed.” Gyotaku, a peaceful art of the Samurai, means “fish rubbing”—a very old art still practiced today. Children tried their hand at creating fish rubbings, using plastic fish. • Tenley-Friendship hosted demonstrations of Ikebana, the art of Japanese flower arranging. • Did you know that children make sushi with toasted rice cereal, gummy fish, and fruit roll-ups?


April is National Poetry Month, and the Teen Space at MLK Library was the venue for open mic poetry reading and performances by 20 poets and for poetry-related games and the chance for writing or reciting poems at the carnival booths. The carnival booths had irresistible names, like Magnetic Poetry, Freestyle Fairy Tales, Pin the Pen on the Map, and Wheel of Rhyme. Some 56 teens, parents, and educators attended. The carnival was the brainchild of DCPL’s Jamila Felton and Jonathan Tucker, Coach of the DC Youth Slam Team. The DC Youth Slam is a program of Split This Rock, a nonprofit organization dedicated to elevating the role of the poet in public life and encouraging teens to tell their stories in poetry.

a poeTry CarnivaL for Teens

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