Press Release - Detail
For immediate release Friday, Aug. 5, 2016
CONTACT:  Roy L. Williams                                 
Director of Public Relations             
Birmingham Public Library                          
Phone: (205) 226-3746 cell (205) 568-0067                        
Birmingham Public Library Board awards 2 new “Innovative Cool” award recipients
BIRMINGHAM, AL- Two efforts spearheaded by a library assistant III at Eastwood Branch Library and one in the Southern Research Department in the Linn-Henley Building downtown are the latest recipients of grants from the Birmingham Public Library (BPL) Board of Trustees.

The BPL Board’s "Innovative Cool Awards" program was established in April to encourage staffers to develop engaging new programs to help generate enthusiasm and value for their library patrons. The $50 awards funding the programs are designed to encourage staff and librarians “to promote the library’s mission of lifelong learning and cultural enrichment,” said Dora Sims, chair of the BPL Board Advocacy Committee.

  The two winners will be recognized during the BPL Board meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 9 at 4:30 p.m. Here is background on the two new award recipients:
  • "Recovering the Classics," submitted by Laura Gentry, a librarian in the Southern History Department. The project, beginning in September, promotes advocacy of classic books through a contest to encourage young adults and adults to create/design book covers for classical books. Winning book cover designs will be placed in a display exhibit staged on the first floor of the Central Library downtown.
  • "Make Your Own Halloween Mask Party," submitted by Claire Stanton, a library assistant III at Eastwood Library. “We are excited and are confident the children will have a lot of fun making their own Halloween masks,” said Sims, BPL Advocacy Committee Chair. “It is through projects such as these, children learn to be creative and develop a love and appreciation for the library.” 
The idea for the award was brought to the Advocacy Committee by committee member Gwendolyn Amamoo. The board anticipates awarding up to $1,900 in new programs by the end of 2016. Guidelines for The Board Awards for “Innovative and Cool” Programs are posted on the library’s Intranet where all library staff has full access.
In order to qualify, staff must submit a brief paragraph or two explaining to the board how they will use the funds.  The funds should assist staff in bringing new ideas to the library or provide extra support to existing programs.  Submissions are due by the 15th of each month.

For additional information about the programs and services of the Birmingham Public Library, visit our website at and be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter @BPL. The mission of Birmingham Public Library is to provide the highest quality library service to our citizens for life-long learning, cultural enrichment, and enjoyment. This system—with 19 locations and serving the community for 129 years—is one of the largest library systems in the southeast. 
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