United for Libraries Learning Live, March 23: “Building Support for the Build America’s Libraries Act”

All Nebraska public libraries are members of United for Libraries through the Statewide Group Membership purchased by the Nebraska Library Commission. The Commission provides this membership to ensure that public library staff members, Friends, Trustees, and Foundations can take advantage of United for Libraries’ services to enhance fundraising, advocacy, and public awareness.

United for Libraries’ monthly virtual series, Learning Live, will feature ALA’s Public Policy & Advocacy Office with “Building Support for the Build America’s Libraries Act” Tuesday, March 23 at 2 p.m. Eastern.  The Learning Live program is open to United for Libraries members (including statewide members).

The average public library building dates back to 1970 — before the Americans with Disabilities Act (1990), the World Wide Web (1991), and the “maker” movement (2005). Our communities need modern libraries to meet today’s needs. Join ALA’s Public Policy & Advocacy office staff to prepare for the next big library campaign, which is already underway.

The Build America’s Libraries Act would provide $5 billion to repair, modernize, and construct library facilities. Public libraries, tribal libraries and state libraries that serve the public would be eligible for funding, with priority for libraries serving marginalized communities.

Gavin Baker, Deputy Director, Public Policy & Government Relations, and Larra Clark, Deputy Director, Public Policy & Advocacy, will share context, strategy, messaging, and action items to make the case for why libraries must be included in the anticipated infrastructure and economic recovery package.  

Gavin Baker serves as Deputy Director in the American Library Association’s Public Policy and Advocacy Office. Previously, he worked at Common Cause, the Center for Effective Government, and the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition. Gavin earned an M.S. in library and information studies from Florida State University and a B.A. in political science from the University of Florida.

Larra Clark serves as Deputy Director for both the Public Library Association (PLA) and the American Library Association’s (ALA) Public Policy & Advocacy Office. Her career spans 20 years managing library communications, policy and research following a decade in nonprofit public affairs, government relations, and print journalism. She received her library master’s degree from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

This session will be recorded, and the recording, slides, and accompanying resources will be available to attendees and members.

United for Libraries Learning Live sessions take place on the fourth Tuesday of each month at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. Each month’s session covers a hot topic of interest to Trustees, Friends and/or Foundations, followed by a Q&A and/or discussions.

United for Libraries: The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations, is a division of the American Library Association with approximately 4,000 personal and group members representing hundreds of thousands of library supporters. United for Libraries supports those who govern, promote, advocate, and fundraise for libraries, and brings together library trustees, advocates, friends, and foundations into a partnership that creates a powerful force for libraries in the 21st century. For more information, visit www.ala.org/united/ or call (800) 545-2433, ext. 2161.

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