Richard Ashby


Mr. Richard E. Ashby, Jr., is the director of the FOR Sto-Rox Public Library in McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania; co-founder and director of LiteracyNation, and president of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. He became a librarian to make a difference in the lives of everyone that he meets.

Librarianship has helped him reach his goals and live his dreams. His amazing journey, however, did not begin as a librarian, although his mother told him that he would probably become one.

An upcoming book, due out in spring 2019, shares seemingly unreal vignettes from Mr. Ashby’s life. His amazing story weaves the reader through experience after experience and adventure after adventure on his arduous path to become the president of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association.

Resiliency is a word that has been Mr. Ashby’s friend and helped him journey through life’s challenges. Due to the many peaks and valleys experienced in his own life, Mr. Ashby relates well with people from all walks of life. When asked how he can do this with such ease, his answer is always, ” because I have been there.” “Compassion has been the hallmark of my journey. My libraries are hubs of the community. Let me tell you how to reach the people you serve in more tangible ways.”

Mr. Ashby received a Bachelor of Science Degree from the New York Institute of Technology, Old Westbury, NY., and Master of Library Science Degree from Queens College, Flushing, NY.

He was the first African American male librarian and director in Delaware County PA. He was the 2014 Librarian of The Year, past president of the New York Black Librarians Caucus, and Co-Pastor of Church of Christian Fellowship, Upper Darby PA.

He is a Certified GED Tutor and a Certified Adult Literacy Tutor,

Awards and Presentations:

  • 2018-Presenter / Georgia Library Association Conference
  • 2018- Keynote Speaker/ South Carolina Library Association. Conference
  • 2018- NY Library Association Conference speaker
  • 2018- New York Black Librarians Caucus special session / Speaker
  • 2016-Indiana library Association/ Speaker
  • Library Journal Movers and Shakers award 2016Key Note Speaker- Gamma Phi- Children Day Program, 2015
  • Guest Speaker- Youth Night Out- 2015
  • Guest Speaker- Christian Comedy show- Life-changing Ministries 2015
  • Guest Speaker-James Varrick AME Zion-2015
  • Panelist Participation- Black Caucus American Library Association, NCAAL, 2015
  • Panelist Participation- New York Library Association, 2015
  • Panelist Participation- American Library Association, 2015
  • Keynote Speaker- Gamma Phi- Children Day Program, 2015
  • Keynote Speaker- Men’s Day Emmanuel Baptist Church, 2014
  • Panelist Participation- Penn. Library Association.2014
  • Panelist Participation- New York Library Association, 2014
  • Vice president/ President-elect for the Black Caucus American Library
  • BCALA Librarian of the year, 2014
  • BCALA – NYBLC Affiliate of the year 2014
  • Panelist Participation-Reforma Northeast Division, 2013
  • Panelist Participation- Harlem Book Fair, 2013
  • Wyandanch Public Library – Community Service Awards, 2004, 2005
  • Wyandanch Family Community Organization Community Service Awards, 1999, 2006
  • Town of Babylon Community Service Award, 2006
  • Suffolk County Community Service Award, 2006
  • Community Service Awards, Wyandanch School District, 2003 – 2007
  • Feed African People Service Awards, 2005 – 2007
  • North American Black Business Woman Service Award/Ethiopian Embassy Washington DC, 2009
  • Martin Luther King Elementary Librarian Service Award-2010
  • Attended Conferences:
  • Youth Summit, Reaching and Encouraging Youth, Philadelphia, PA, May 2008
  • OCLC, Arlington, VA, April 2008
  • Public Library Association (PLA), Minneapolis, MN, March 2008
  • American Library Association (ALA) Mid Winter, Philadelphia, PA January 2008
  • Black Caucus American Library Association (BCALA), Fort Worth, TX, June 2007
  • ALA, Washington DC, May 2007
  • ALA, Chicago May 2009
  • ALA, Washington DC, June 2010
  • Memberships: President-New York Black Librarian Caucus-Present
  • Member, American Library Association, Black Caucus Library Association,
  • Young Adult Services Library AssociationMember,
  • Community Watch, June 2000 -Present
  • Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., May 1978 – Present
  • Leadership Training Institute Inc Mentoring advisory Board-2009-Present
  • Board of Trustee: New beginnings Halfway House- Present

Association and Membership

  • New York Black Librarians Caucus-Present
  • Pennsylvania Black Librarians’ Caucus-co-Founder-Present
  • American Library Association-Present
  • Maryland Library Association
  • Pennsylvania Library Association
  • Pennsylvania LibraryAssociation Equity Diversion and equality Task Force- Charter member
  • Joint Conference Librarians of Color (JCLC)-Present
  • Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity- 1978-Present