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Read the latest news about FTRF and the First Amendment in Libraries and engage with thoughtful opinions from leaders in our community on The FTRF Blog.

 

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Applications for the Gordon M. Conable Conference Scholarship are now open!

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, March 2, 2016

The Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) offers an annual scholarship for library school students and new professionals to attend ALA's Annual Conference. The goal of the Gordon M. Conable Conference Scholarship is to advance two principles that Gordon held dear: intellectual freedom and mentoring.

More info HERE.

Tags:  ALA Annual Conference  Conable Scholarship 

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Applications for BBW Krug Fund Grants - now open!

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Since 2010, the Judith F. Krug Memorial Fund has disbursed grants to organizations to assist them stage "Read-Outs" or other events during Banned Books Week.

 (A Banned Books Week Read-Out is an event at which people gather to read from books that have been banned or challenged over the years, in order to celebrate the freedom to read.)

The 2016 Banned Books Week: September 25 - October 1, 2016

Grant application deadline: May 15, 2016

Application info HERE

Tags:  BBW2016  Judith F. Krug Memorial Fund  Read_out 

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Bring Thomas Paine to your library and encourage intellectual freedom

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, February 17, 2016

With a new twist on banned books, ALA-OIF is partnering with Ian Ruskin world renowned actor and playwright. Starting this spring, Ian Ruskin is offering libraries an opportunity to provide Sneak Preview Screenings of To Begin the World Over Again: the Life of Thomas Paine.

The film on the life of Thomas Paine, author of Common Sense, will be aired on public TV this Presidential election year. Thomas Paine wrote about ideas that were so controversial he was often imprisoned and fined, and almost executed. His works were banned in Europe and anyone who distributed, read or discussed his books faced prosecution.

This is a great opportunity for libraries to support the ALA and Intellectual Freedom, AND they get a program out of it! (Libraries can also contact Ian Ruskin to book a Skype or Google visit.)

For $50, libraries get the license to show the film as an event, DVDs to circulate in their collection, talking points, an action plan, recipes, and a publicity kit with posters, social media banners, and press releases. 10% of these proceeds will go to the American Library Association/the Office for Intellectual Freedom! When people order, they can request Freedom to Read Foundation brochures free of charge for their patrons.

For more, please visit Ian’s website, or share the ALA-OIF blog

Tags:  ALA-OIF  Ian Ruskin  Thomas Paine 

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Knowledge Quest Marks the FTRF Changes

Posted By Administration, Monday, January 4, 2016

Beginning January 1, 2016, there will be a major change in the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) and the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF). On December 31, 2015, Barbara Jones, the OIF executive director, retired. She became the executive director of both OIF and FTRF following the death of her mentor Judith Krug in 2009. As an academic librarian…READ MORE

Tags:  Barbara Jones 

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James LaRue to head ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom and the Freedom to Read Foundation

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, December 9, 2015

We welcome the appointment of James LaRue, Director, ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom, and Executive Director, Freedom to Read Foundation, effective January 4, 2016. In his application, LaRue noted “My passion for this core principle of librarianship is tightly bound with my own history….For me, librarianship – and life – is predicated on a respect for the fundamental dignity of individual inquiry.”

James LaRue brings a rich and diverse background to this role. He is currently CEO of LaRue & Associates, with an active career in writing, speaking and consulting. Previously, he was director of the Douglas County Libraries (Colorado) and Library Services Director at the Greeley Public Library (Colorado), with earlier positions at the Lincoln Library (Illinois) and Illinois State University.

LaRue also brings a long history of professional engagement. Among his many activities, he has served on the Bibliographic Center for Research (BCR) Board of Trustees, OCLC Membership Council, and Douglas County Youth Initiative Executive Board. He was president of the Colorado Council for Library Development (2002-2003) and president of the Colorado Library Association (1998-1999). He was named Colorado Librarian of the Year in 1998 and received the Julia J. Boucher Award for Intellectual Freedom from the Colorado Library Association in 2007. In 2004, he was awarded the National Council of Teachers of English/Support for the Learning and Teaching of English Intellectual Freedom Award.

Within ALA, he has most recently been active on ALA’s Digital Content Working Group (2011–). He is a member of the Library Leadership and Management Association (LLAMA) and Public Library Association (PLA), both divisions of the American Library Association, and the ALA Intellectual Freedom Round Table.

A prolific writer and frequent speaker, his publications include “Self-Publishing: Does It Belong in the Collection,” in Rethinking Collection Development and Management; “The Last One Standing,” Public Libraries (January/February 2002); “Tough Times and Eight Ways to Deal with Them,” American Libraries (January/February 2010); and, The New Inquisition: Understanding and Managing Intellectual Freedom Challenges (2007), among others. He regularly speaks on a range of topics, from libraries in the digital world to leadership and transformation.

James LaRue has a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science (University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana) and a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and English (Illinois State University).

As Director of ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF), James LaRue will work with ALA’s Intellectual Freedom Committee (IFC) and Committee on Professional Ethics (COPE), as well as the Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT). OIF provides information to individuals and organizations facing intellectual freedom challenges; plans and promotes initiatives that promote intellectual freedom, privacy and free access to information (including Banned Books Week); and, works closely with others, including the ALA Washington Office, on core information policy issues. The OIF Director also serves as the executive director of the Freedom to Read Foundation, an allied 501(c)(3) organization, and as secretariat for the LeRoy C. Merritt Humanitarian Fund.

LaRue’s appointment follows the December 31, 2015 retirement of Barbara M. Jones as the Director of the Office for Intellectual Freedom.

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