Inagural Grant Recipients Announced at the 2017 American Libraries Association Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits Librarian Reception

New York, NY, January 20, 2017 – The Penguin Random House Foundation, home to the Penguin Random House Library Awards for Innovation, today announced the recipients of its 2017 Library Awards for Innovation.  These awards recognize the nation’s most innovative public libraries and librarians for community-based library programs that engage citizens in reading and strengthen the social and cultural fabric of their community.  Open to public libraries and public school libraries across the United States and Canada (2017 only), the awards aim to encourage citizens to participate in and support reading initiatives that connect libraries with their communities.


Skip Dye, Vice President, Academic Marketing & Library Sales, Penguin Random House, announced this year’s 2017 recipients at the Penguin Random House Librarian Reception annually held on opening day of the American Libraries Association Midwinter Meetings & Exhibits conference, this year held at the Georgia World Conference Center in Atlanta.


“It’s such an honor to highlight and celebrate some of the extraordinary and innovative programs which librarians have created to connect and grow literacy in their communities,” said Mr. Dye.  “Never has there been a more important time to encourage, support and value the impact that librarians have in our society. These librarians, in fact all librarians, are doing their part to transform their communities while strengthening the social and cultural fabric of our world.”


The 2017 awards consist of one $10,000 first-place grant, six $1,000 runner-up grants, and one book grant award for each librarian’s respective public library. In addition, book donations will be made to all of this year’s winners, listed below:


Kay Marner–$10,000 Grant Recipient, Project Coordinator

Ames Public Library – Ames, IA


Syntychia Kendrick-Samuel – $1,000 Grant Recipient, Head of Teen Svcs.

Uniondale Public Library – Uniondale, NY


Jessica Link –  $1,000 Grant Recipient, Volunteer Coordinator

Cedar Rapids Public Library – Cedar Rapids, IA


Keenon McCloy – $1,000 Grant Recipient, Director

Memphis Public Library– Memphis, TN


Linda Osuna – $1,000 Grant Recipient, CEO Manager

Hillsboro Public Library – Hillsboro, OR


Tracy Green – $1,000 Grant Recipient, Director of Development

Louisville Free Public Library– Louisville, KY


Janet Brown – $1,000 Grant Recipient, Library Svcs. Rep.

Windsor Public Library – Windsor, ON


Jerry Szpilla – Book Grant Award Recipient, Manager

Camden County Library System– Camden, NJ



As part of the first-place award, conference registration, travel, and lodging expense was included so that librarian Kay Marner could accept the awards at the evening’s opening Penguin Random House reception, expected to be attended by more than 150 librarians from around the country.





About Penguin Random House


Penguin Random House, the world’s largest trade book publisher, is dedicated to its mission of nourishing a universal passion for reading by connecting authors and their writing with readers everywhere. The company, which employs more than 10,000 people globally, was formed on July 1, 2013, by Bertelsmann and Pearson, who own 53 percent and 47 percent, respectively. With nearly 250 independent imprints and brands on five continents, Penguin Random House comprises adult and children’s fiction and nonfiction print and digital trade book publishing businesses in more than 20 countries worldwide, including the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, China, India, South Africa, Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Peru, Portugal, and Uruguay. With over 15,000 new titles, and close to 800 million print, audio and eBooks sold annually, Penguin Random House’s publishing lists include more than 60 Nobel Prize laureates and hundreds of the world’s most widely read authors.





Claire von Schilling                                                    Melanie Fallon-Houska

212-782-9876                                                              212-782-8319


More information regarding this year’s recipients, including the 2018 application go to:


Application submission deadline is April 15, 2018.