Algonquin Area Public Library District
Lindsey, the first winner from Illinois, was nominated by teens from two states–Illinois and Nebraska. She is commended for inspiring youth by creating welcoming environments that help them to learn and grow.
One teen nominator said, “I remember what Lindsey said to us during the first [Teen Advisory Board] meeting–we could make the library anything we wanted it to be. That’s empowering.”
Working with Teen Advisory Boards, Lindsey encouraged teens to develop programs that reflected their interests. Together, they have taken field trips to plays, concerts and comic book conventions to pursue their collective passions. She also helps them establish groups and activities such as the bacon club, a makerspace and teen storytime.
When teens and tweens wanted to create a program that would allow them to play and create, Lindsey applied for a grant. The library was able to purchase educational toys like robotic dinosaurs that could be built from scratch.
Teens see Lindsey as a role model, mentor and friend. They say they can count on her for support and advice even after they go away to college. She allows teen to be themselves, grow confidence and develop their own interests. She has even inspired interest in librarianship, which some have pursued in in their college studies.