Dr. Clara M. Chu, Mortenson Distinguished Professor and Director of the Mortenson Center for International Library Programs and an affiliated faculty at the iSchool, is honored with the 2019 American Library Association (ALA), Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT) Distinguished Librarian Award. The Distinguished Librarian Award recognizes significant accomplishments in library services that are national or international in scope and include improving, spreading, and promoting multicultural librarianship.
The EMIERT Distinguished Librarian Award recognizes significant accomplishments in library services that are national or international in scope and that include improving, spreading, and promoting multicultural services in libraries. Persons in the library world are eligible to be considered for the award based on outstanding achievement and leadership in serving the community by significant collection building and outreach services, and/or developing creative multicultural materials and programs.
Founded in 1982, the Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT)serves as a source of information for recommended ethnic and multilingual collections, services, and programs. It aims to serve as a source of information on recommended ethnic collections, services, and programs and to organize task forces, institutes, and workshops to carry out the functions of the Round Table as defined in the petition. EMIERT also develops for annual conferences, forums and symposia programs that deal with the key issues of ethnicity and librarianship, maintains a liaison with the Office for Diversity, Literacy and Outreach Services, and cooperates with other ALA units, including the ethnic affiliates, in joint projects for the betterment of outreach services.
Dr. Chu’s specialization areas include the sociocultural study of information use, practices, and systems that impact access, representation, and collective memory in multicultural communities in order to foster information equity and social change. She is a leading and respected international voice on cultural diversity in the library and information science and has contributed to developing professional initiatives and policy documents to improve, spread, and promote multicultural librarianship nationally and internationally.
“EMIERT is where I began my active engagement in ALA so it is especially meaningful to receive this honor,” states Clara Chu. “To have been able to work alongside EMIERT co-founder David Cohen, and many others to enhance library and information services to multicultural communities has been professionally rewarding.”
Chu has over 30 years of service in the profession. She has received numerous accolades in recognition of her leadership, service, and scholarly contributions. Additionally, she has authored numerous publications that promote cross-cultural literacy in the library and information science and has served on multiple advisory committees, boards, and panels. She will receive this award during the ALA Annual Conference 2019 this summer in Washington, D.C. As a recipient of the award, Chu will receive a commemorative plaque and a $500 honorarium to be presented during the EMIERT Chair’s Program, “Social Unrest, Democracy, and Librarianship in the 21st Century.”
Founded on October 6, 1876, during the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, The American Library Association (ALA)is the oldest and largest library association in the world. Its mission is to provide leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.