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2017 Banned Books Week Awards

Award Statement:Teresa Doherty

I am honored to announce the winners of this year's Banned Books Week display contest.

This year, we had submissions from 30 different libraries, including several branches of the same county or regional system; 27 public libraries and 3 academic libraries. There were lots of creative displays and opportunities for patron interaction with the ideas behind Banned Books Week - that words have power and our First Amendment freedom of speech is just as important now as when it was written.

The public library winner created what they called a: “Read-easy -- a speak-easy for Banned Books.” They had a “Read Between the Lines display” with crates and barrels spilling out streams of challenged book covers, with life size silhouettes of folks imbibing illicit books! Congratulations to Chesapeake Public Library, Dr. Clarence V Cuffee Branch.







The winning academic library used social media to promote their events and collaborated with the Campus Bookstore and Professors in the English literature, Linguistics and Speech Departments to organize a public reading of selections of classic Banned books. They also created a book display in the lobby, with books covered in paper burned at the edges. Congratulations to University of Mary Washington Library.                            


Snapshot Virginia has been a great success in promoting library advocacy. Over two-thirds of public libraries and many academic and special libraries participate.

Snapshot Day is an opportunity for you to collect photos and customer comments to use in your library advocacy. Use these materials in your social media outreach, in flyers and bookmarks, and in budget proposals to illustrate how essential libraries are. Step-by-step instructions and forms for preparing for your Snapshot Day, carrying it out successfully, and sharing your photos with the Snapshot Flickr pool are listed at The instructions for  are on the website. The Flickr password is becauseofapubliclibrary

Snapshot takes place during the month of April. Pick the day that works best for you--will key staff be present? What fabulous programs will be going on? On which days can you get a photographer? If you have multiple locations, there's no need to hold all your Snapshots on a single day.

Reminder that Snapshot is simpler to implement than in previous years. It is no longer necessary to submit statistics on use. Statistics captured in one day are often not representative, and not as useful as those which libraries are already tracking over the entire year. Statistics on circulation, new borrowers, computer use and the like are a compelling way to illustrate how busy and essential libraries are and you are encouraged to continue using those meaningful numbers. Additionally, you do not need to send in your customer comments. The comments you collect during Snapshot can be an excellent example of the emotional connection your customers feel with their library and should be used in your own publicity year-round.

The purpose of Snapshot is to kick-start library advocacy. So turn your collected photos and comments into awesome bookmarks and flyers! Make screensavers and slide shows! You've already done the hard part--you've made your library an essential part of your community--now take the evidence of that commitment and use it to ensure that the public, media, and budgetary decision makers see libraries for the indispensable public service they are.

Questions? Please contact Snapshot Coordinator Sean Bonney at the Central Rappahannock Regional Library.

-updated 1/17/18


Join us for the CaTS Cataloging Forum!

March 23, 2018
Virginia Wesleyan University, 5817 Wesleyan Dr, Virginia Beach, VA 23455
Greer Environmental Sciences Center, Room 255.


  • Topics include electronic formats, Tech Services workflows, challenges of A/V, cataloging best practices and your questions.
  • Parking is free.
  • All participants will be required to go through a security gate when they enter the campus.
  • Overnight accommodations are available.
  • Lunch will be on your own. There is a dining hall on campus and a buffet lunch costs around $6.50. There are also a number of fast food options on Northhampton Boulevard (within a 5-10 minute drive from campus).

Have questions or need help with the registration form? Email Liz Steyer at [email protected]


Planning Ahead? Mark Your Calendar for Future VLA Conferences

Upcoming Conferences

We are already hard at work planning our next Virginia Library Association (VLA) conferences! While we are still hammering out the exciting details, you can already save the dates!

VLA Professional Associates Forum (VLAPAF) Conferences






May 21, 2018

Newport News Marriott at City Center

The 2018 VLA Professional Associates Conference will be held once again at the Newport News Marriott at City Center in Newport News, Virginia


VLA Annual Conferences

Colonial Williamsburg

September 26-28, 2018

Colonial Williamsburg

The VLA Annual Conference will return to Williamsburg in 2018, but there won't be anything old about what we will be planning. Questions? Please contact 2018 VLA President Todd Elliott, [email protected], 2018 VLA Conference Chair Clint S. Rudy, [email protected], or VLA Executive Director, Lisa R. Varga, [email protected]







October 23-25, 2019

Hilton Norfolk The Main

The 2019 VLA Conference will return to the The Main in Norfolk, Virginia






October 28-30, 2020

The Omni Homestead Resort

The 2020 VLA Annual Conference will be held at the ever popular Omni Homestead Resort located in beautiful Hot Springs, Virginia

Stay tuned for more information!

Visit the Event Calendar to stay up-to-date on all the events the Virginia Library Association is planning.

- Last updated 10/02/2017


Special Annual Wrap-up Edition: People & Happenings

After a short hiatus, People & Happenings is back!

Have you recently received a promotion? Has your library system hired new staff? Is your building undergoing a renovation or are you adding a new location? Or do you want to celebrate your staff's hard work on a recent event? VLA wants to know!

Anyone in Virginia can share their library updates to be posted on our “People & Happenings” page. Send your news in by the 15th of each month. Please keep your news items brief and please do include any relevant photographs, such as headshots for people and in-progress shots of renovations and new buildings. Please send your items to [email protected].

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