WASHINGTON (April 23, 2013) - The Institute of Museum and Library Services today announced The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County of Cincinnati, Ohio, as one of 10 recipients of this year's National Medal for Museum and Library Service. The nation's highest honor conferred on museums and libraries for service to the community, the National Medal celebrates institutions that make a difference for individuals, families, and communities. The National Medal will be presented at a celebration in Washington, D.C. on May 8.
The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County serves 49 separate jurisdictions that are economically, educationally, and ethnically diverse. The Library is one of the largest, oldest, and most-heavily used in America. More than 17.6 million items were borrowed in 2011, making it the eighth busiest library in the nation. The library is committed to academic achievement, and works with community partners on several programs including Read On! and Success by 6 to improve grade level reading and kindergarten readiness. Its summer educational programs including summer reading and Brain Camps help reduce learning loss. Equally committed to encouraging lifelong learning, the library established an Adult Learning Center to support literacy, math skills, online job applications, and GED preparation.
"Museums and libraries serve as centers for lifelong learning and as cornerstones for our communities. Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County is fostering lifelong learning for community members young and old, and we are proud to name this library one of this year's National Medal for Museum and Library Service winners," said Susan Hildreth, director, Institute of Museum and Library Services. "This year's National Medal recipients demonstrate the many ways museums and libraries alike build strong communities. These institutions are educating, inspiring, and leading lifelong learning while serving as community anchors."
"We are honored and delighted to have been selected as a 2013 National Medal recipient. From helping children learn to read to helping jobseekers with their search, our many programs and services are designed to meet the specific needs of the diverse community we serve," said The Eva Jane Romaine Coombe Director Kimber L. Fender. "This recognition would not have been possible without the strong support of our community and our many community partners. We look forward to continuing these invaluable services for years to come."
Amina Tuki, a local resident who uses library programs to support her daughter's educational growth, as well as her own, will travel to Washington and share the impact the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County has had on her life during the May 8 celebration.
This year's honorees exemplify the nation's great diversity of libraries and museums and include a science center, children's museum, music museum, art museum, cultural museum, public libraries, and county library systems, hailing from seven states. Earlier this year, 33 institutions were announced as finalists for the National Medal, and community members were encouraged to share their stories about their experiences on the IMLS Facebook page.
Medal winners were selected from nationwide nominations of institutions that demonstrate innovative approaches to public service, exceeding the expected levels of community outreach. After the ceremony, StoryCorps - a national nonprofit dedicated to recording, preserving, and sharing the stories of Americans - will visit Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County to document stories from the community.
For a complete list of 2013 recipients and to learn more about the National Medal winners, please visit www.imls.gov/medals.
About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. Our grant making, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive. To learn more, visit http://www.imls.gov and follow us on Facebook <http://www.facebook.com/USIMLS> and Twitter <http://www.twitter.com/us_imls> .
About Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County
The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County is one of the oldest, largest, and busiest libraries in the U.S., serving a population of over 800,000 with a collection of more than 9 million items. In support of its mission of connecting people with the world of ideas and information, a wide variety of services and over 20,000 free programs are presented each year. For more information, visit www.cincinnatilibrary.org.
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