British Columbia Library Association

BCLA Awards


BCLA Awards Categories

BCLA Eureka Award

This award is given to an individual or organization that has created an innovative approach to address a barrier, solve a problem, provide a powerful new insight, or introduce an original idea in the library field.

This is an award for thinkers, analysers, innovators, dreamers, and doers. An individual winner may have completely solved a problem or fully developed a new idea, or may have been a significant contributor to a larger team project. The winner may be an organization responsible for a considerable contribution to the library community, a contribution that helps the library community as a whole and strengthens the “idea” of library in our society–or the recipient may not be from the library community, but has made a notable contribution to the relevance of libraries.

The BCLA Eureka Award grows out of BCLA’s commitment to analyzing, supporting, and participating in the ongoing evolution of libraries and library services. It is linked to BCLA’s stated core value to support and encourage creativity and innovation.

It takes time and commitment to build an idea up from a concept into a project or program through assessment, modifications, and evaluation. With this in mind, the BCLA Eureka Award will consider submissions based on work begun in the five years prior to the date of the award application.

BCLA Champion of Intellectual Freedom Award

This award is given to an individual or organization that demonstrates significant advancement of intellectual freedom in the public realm for the benefit of British Columbians.

This is an award for librarians and library staff that champion intellectual freedom issues in their libraries, their communities, their province or their country. The winner could also be a journalist, or media outlet, an organization dedicated to free speech and challenging expected norms, a lawyer, policy maker, or community leader.

The BCLA Champion of Intellectual Freedom Award grows out of the Association’s commitment to uphold the principles and tenets of intellectual freedom including the right to seek, receive, hold and disseminate information from all points of view—a foundation of a democratic society.

Recognizing that it takes significant time for many projects to mature and for those involved to demonstrate the impact of the work or the success of the idea, the BCLA Champion of Intellectual Freedom Award will consider submissions based on work done in the two years prior to the date of the award application.

BCLA Building Better Communities Award

This award is for an individual or organization responsible for increasing the relevancy and impact of library service through partnership, collaboration, and building trust where little had previously existed. The winner may be engaged in service delivery, professional development, marketing, or community-led library work.  Achievements may originate with a library or an individual, or with a community partner.

The BCLA Building Better Communities Award evolves from the Association’s commitment to open access and inclusion. BCLA advocates for libraries and library services for all British Columbians. This includes barrier-free facilities, open and equitable access to library services, and environments free of racism, religious intolerance, and violence. BCLA believes that people, communities and organizations need universal access to information, ideas, and works of the imagination for their social, cultural, educational, democratic and economic well-being.

Recognizing that it takes significant time for many projects to mature and for those involved to demonstrate the impact of the work or the success of the idea, the BCLA Building Better Communities will consider submissions based on work done in the two years prior to the date of the award application.

Nominations for the BCLA Awards are now closed.


BCLA Professional Development Awards

Irving K. Barber Learning Centre Award

The Irving K. Barber Learning Centre is providing funding up to a $2,400 to help with the travel and hotel costs for up to six BC Library Conference delegates from rural and northern libraries.

Applicants are asked to provide a short written piece articulating how the Irving K. Barber support will benefit them and their library. For those applicants receiving this support, BCLA will add an Alice Bacon Award to cover the full conference registration.

Nominations for the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre Award are now closed.

Alice Bacon Professional Development Award

This award is named in honour of Alice Bacon, who for many years organized and lobbied for improved continuing education opportunities for members of the BC library community. The award is intended to help individuals who would otherwise be unable to attend the BC Library Conference due to limited funds. Awards can vary in amount but generally cover the cost of conference registration.

We look forward to hearing from those of you who may not have had an opportunity to attend many conferences in the past, as well as from people who would like an opportunity to expand their professional education.

Nominations for the Alice Bacon Professional Development Award are now closed.

Ken Haycock Student Conference Award

The Ken Haycock Student Conference Award is intended to encourage leadership and professional activity among students by contributing $300 toward BC Library Conference expenses. BCLA will provide full basic conference registration for the award recipient. This is a valuable opportunity for MLIS students engage with members of the BC library community and network with individuals who may be crucial to future career aspirations.

Criteria for applicants:

The Ken Haycock Student Conference Award is named in honour of Dr. Ken Haycock, who is a luminary in the provincial, national and international library sectors. Ken is research professor with the new Center for Library Leadership and Management at the University of Southern California. He was previously director at the San Jose School of Library and Information Science, building it into the largest program in the world with four degrees and 2,800 students in the MLIS program in 14 countries, and at the School of Library, Archival and Information Studies at the University of British Columbia, introducing with colleagues the joint MAS/MLIS program, First Nations concentration, MA in children’s literature and PhD program. Prior to the academy, he was a member of the senior management team of the Vancouver School Board, responsible for curriculum and program development and implementation, curriculum resources and technologies and staff development for 7,000 employees at 115 sites.

His consultancies, as senior partner with Ken Haycock & Associates Inc., include leadership development and coaching as well as governance, organizational and program reviews. In the broader community Ken has been a public library trustee, elected school board member and chair, elected municipal councillor and served on dozens of government and community boards as diverse as publishing, elimination of sexism, race relations and community services.

Recognized by many associations he was awarded the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Medal for contributions to society and an honorary Doctor of Letters from Capilano University. Ken holds an Ed.D. (Brigham Young), M.B.A. (Royal Roads), A.M.L.S. (Michigan), and M.Ed. (Ottawa). His research interests focus on management and leadership, role clarification and effectiveness, organizational development, advocacy and influence.

A prolific writer and speaker, Ken Haycock is a committed and passionate advocate for public education, for libraries and for librarians.

Nominations for the Ken Haycock Student Conference Award are now closed.


BCLA Section / Committee / Interest Group Awards

BC Academic Libraries Section (BCALS) Outstanding Contribution Award

Please note: This award is administered by the BCALS section of the British Columbia Library Association.

The BC Academic Librarians Section (ALS) Outstanding Contribution Award goes to an academic librarian, or team of same, whose outstanding contribution has made a real difference to students, faculty, or colleagues in British Columbia.

For more information, please visit the ALS Award page.

Young Adult and Children’s Services Section Award

Please note: This award is administered by the YAACS section of the British Columbia Library Association.

The Young Adult and Children’s Services Section (YAACS) established the YAACS Award in 2012 to recognize exceptional service in the area of children’s or teen librarianship in British Columbia.

For more information, please visit the YAACS Award page.

BCCATS Technical Services Award

Please note: This award is administered by the Cataloguing and Technical Services Interest Group (BCCATS) of the British Columbia Library Association.

The BCCATS Technical Services Award recognizes an individual or unit working in technical services that has demonstrated excellence and/or made a difference to users and colleagues in British Columbia in the area of Technical services.

For more information, please visit the BCCATS Awards page.


2018 BCLA Awards Committee members

Daphne Wood, Chair (Past BCLA President)
Christina Neigel
Kate Sloan
Anne Olsen, ex officio (BCLA President)
Annette DeFaveri, ex officio (Executive Director)