National Conference of African American Librarians (NCAAL) XI Awards and Honors Recipients Named

Eight individuals were honored July 29, 2021, as recipients of Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA) awards and honors at the Awards and Honors Ceremony during the National Conference of African American Librarians (NCAAL) held virtually on July 28 – August 1, 2021. The conference theme was “Culture Keepers XI: Sankofa Experience: Inspired by Our Past, Lighting Our Future.”

The winners were: Carolyn L. Garnes, retired Deputy Director of the Atlanta Fulton Public Library, Atlanta and Brenda Johnson Perkins, Adult and Community Engagement Coordinator, Baltimore County Public Library, Towson, MD Branch—BCALA Appreciation Award given to those who have volunteered their services to enhance the association’s growth.

Ida McGhee, retired manager of the Hartford, CT Public Library on Wheels Department – BCALA Library Advocacy Award given for those who have demonstrated commitment to advocating for library and information services to African Americans and people of color.

Michele T. Fenton, monographs cataloguer at the Indiana State Library, Indianapolis – BCALA Professional Achievement Award to a member who has exhibited meritorious achievement and distinction in the field of African American librarianship.

Ida Williams Thompson, retired director of Instructional Technology Services at the Richland School District Number One in Columbia, SC—BCALA Distinguished Service to the Library Profession Award to those who have made significant and extraordinary contributions in service to the library profession by providing exceptional leadership or setting unprecedented standards for participation in the profession.

The third year of the BCALA/Baker & Taylor Library Support Staff Award is presented to Anita Bass, Circulation Assistant III at the Essex, MD Branch of the Baltimore County Public Library System and to Raeven McFadden, Library Assistant, Norwalk, CT Public Library – in recognition of dedication and outstanding performance.

Shirley A. Coaston, retired Laney College Library Director, Oakland, CA – BCALA Trailblazer Award, presented every five years and is the Association’s highest award – to a member in recognition of outstanding and unique pioneering contribution, and whose efforts have “blazed a trail” in the profession.


John S. Page, Chair, Richard Bradberry, Jannie Cobb, Co-chair, ayo dayo, Ebony Henry, Amanda Leftwich, Eva D. Poole, Jamar Rahming, and Donna Ramsey.


The Black Caucus of the American Library Association serves as an advocate for the development, promotion, and improvement of library services and resources to the nation’s African American community; and provides leadership for the recruitment and professional development of African American librarians.

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