This Week at ULC
Newsletter | June 15, 2022
Message from ULC's Executive Board Chair
Dr. Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi

On behalf of the ULC Executive Board, I am very pleased to announce Mr. Brooks Rainwater as the next President and CEO of the Urban Libraries Council.
Brooks is currently the Senior Executive of the National League of Cities and the Director of the Center for City Solutions. At NLC, he is responsible for the organization’s research agenda and develops institutional partnerships with philanthropic, corporate, university and media organizations. Brooks has ensured that NLC’s work is data and outcome driven. He is a champion for urban spaces and recognizes the value and importance of the urban public library.
Brooks leads NLC’s strategic plan on diversity, equity, inclusion and access. NLC has a Center-wide Racial Equity Working Group for digital equity, inclusive economic development and other critical urban issues. He is committed to anti-racism and equity.
I am excited that Brooks is joining the ULC family. I know that he will continue to lead and support the work of urban libraries. He begins his tenure with ULC on July 11.

Finally, I want to recognize the ULC Executive Board and the board’s search committee for their work and dedication to identifying the new leader for ULC. The following members served on the search committee:

  • Karl Dean, former Mayor of Nashville (ULC Vice Chair/Chair-Elect)
  • Sarah Campbell, Executive Director, Portland Public Library 
  • Jesus Salas, Library Trustee, Toledo Lucas County Public Library
  • Roosevelt Weeks, Director, Austin Public Library
  • Vickery Bowles, CEO, Toronto Public Library
  • Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi, San Francisco Library Commission (ULC Chair)
To all ULC members, thank you all for your continued commitment to this wonderful organization.


Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi
Chair, Urban Libraries Council 
Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and
Professor of Communication, University of the Pacific
Taking place on June 19, Juneteenth commemorates the end of slavery in the United States and is a time of celebration and one of education. ULC libraries are joining the celebration this year through a wide range of events and resource collections designed to inform and engage local residents. Check out ULC's Twitter thread to learn more about how our member libraries are honoring Freedom Day.
Join Us Friday, June 24 | 1-4 p.m. ET
ULC Open House

ULC members are invited to visit the ULC office on Friday, June 24 anytime from 1-4 p.m. ET for some light bites and refreshments.

Please come by to tour the ULC office space, meet our new staff members and mingle with your peers! The ULC office is a 12-minute walk from the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. We look forward to seeing you! Registration is required.

ULC Headquarters
1333 H Street, NW
Suite 1000 West
Washington, DC 20005
Join Us Sunday, June 26 | 8:30 a.m.-10 a.m. ET
ULC Member Breakfast

ULC members are invited to a breakfast and discussion in Washington D.C. on Sunday, June 26. Please join us to connect with ULC peers and learn about ULC’s 2022 work and focus.

The ULC Executive Board has proposed a slate of board members for 2022-2023. ULC members will be asked to vote on the slate at the ULC Annual Member Breakfast. Click here to view the ULC Executive Board slate. Registration is required.
Summer Learning 2022
Initiatives, Resources and Social Media Features

ULC libraries serve as essential summer learning leaders in their communities, providing innovative summer reading and active learning opportunities for children, youth and families during this critical time when schools are closed and the risk of falling behind is high.
STEM Summer Learning Cohort
The Building Equity: Amplify Summer Learning initiative supports engaging summertime learning opportunities for middle school youth who have historically been excluded from STEM opportunities. This initiative positions libraries as critical community anchors for learning and and reinforces the library as a place in the community for equity and inclusion.
National Summer Learning Association's Discover Summer
Discover Summer has updated, expanded and doubled the number of summer learning programs they feature. Visit their website for summer resources from leading youth organizations and access a free downloadable family guide.
Summer Reading on Social Media
ULC’s Twitter thread features member libraries that are encouraging their community members to read this summer through fun and exciting programs. 
Boosting Vaccine Confidence Through Communities for Immunity
Glendale Library, Arts & Culture, Central Arkansas Library System, Mid-Continent Public Library, Kansas City Public Library

Last fall, ULC partnered with the Association of Science and Technology Centers and the American Alliance of Museums on the Communities for Immunity initiative. In our latest blog post, learn how ULC members worked hard to boost COVID-19 vaccine confidence in their communities.
Offering Special Bundles Filled with Sunshine
Halifax Public Libraries

Patrons looking for a perfect end-of-year gift idea for a teacher, coach or care provider can check out their library for great ideas. Halifax Public Libraries’ Sunshine Bundle gives back by supporting library programs and services in the local community.
Launching Guide to Indigenous Maryland
Prince George's County Memorial Library System

Earlier this month, Prince George’s County Memorial Library System announced the beta launch of the Guide to Indigenous Maryland mobile app (iOS and Android) and website ( The Guide is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, through the Library Services and Technology Act, and administered by the Maryland State Library Agency, PGCMLS and Maryland’s community of public library systems.
ULC Members Win John Cotton Dana Awards
Chattanooga Public Library, Enoch Pratt Free Library, LA County Library, Tacoma Public Library

Congratulations to four ULC member libraries for being recognized for their strategic communications efforts. The John Cotton Dana Awards are managed by ALA’s Core Division and EBSCO Information Services and consists of $10,000 grants from the H.W. Wilson Foundation.

Chattanooga Public Library
A service plan created for the Chattanooga Public Library identified ways the library could improve connection with the library and sought to address the commonly heard phrase: “I didn’t know the library did that.” 

Enoch Pratt Free Library 
To appeal to a wider audience for Summer 2021, Pratt staff looked outside of typical library program strategies to trending successful business models, and launched an innovative program, Summer in a Box, modeled after popular subscription box services. 

LA County Library
Using CARES Act funding, LA County Library repurposed in-stock laptops and wireless hotspots during the pandemic to create Laptop & Hotspot Loans

Tacoma Public Library
The Tacoma Public Library in Tacoma, Washington, led a compelling fundraising campaign to fund and expand access to its Digital Media Labs — studios at the library utilized by filmmakers, musicians, audio engineers, students, podcasters and other creatives in their thriving arts community. 
ULC Anti-Racism Action Team/EDI Officers
Member Group Call
June 16 | 2-3 p.m. ET
ULC Open House During ALA
Open House
June 24 | 1-4 p.m. ET
ULC Member Breakfast
Member Breakfast & Annual Meeting
June 26 | 8:30-10 a.m. ET
ULC Customer Experience Leaders
Member Group Call
June 30 | 3-4 p.m. ET
Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

Enoch Pratt Free Library

Kent District Library

The Indianapolis Public Library

2022 ULC Annual Forum
November 16-18, 2022
DC Public Library, Washington, D.C.

This November, the 2022 ULC Forum will convene our member community in Washington, D.C. Details and registration information are forthcoming!
The second Library 2.022 mini-conference: "Urban Librarianship: Embracing Challenges and Opportunities through Innovation, Leadership, and Best Practices," will be held online (and for free) on Thursday, July 14, 2022. This event is hosted by Library 2.0 and co-founded by The School of Information at San José State University, and this year features organizational help from Michael Lambert, City Librarian for the City and County of San Francisco. 

Keynote speakers will include:
  • Michael Lambert, City Librarian, San Francisco Public Library
  • Chris Brown, Commissioner, Chicago Public Library
  • Lessa Kanani'opua Pelayo-Lozada, Adult Services Assistant Manager, Palos Verdes Library District
  • Dr. Rhea Lawson, Executive Director, Houston Public Library
  • Kelvin Watson, Executive Director, Las Vegas-Clark County Library District

Session proposals are now being accepted. Registration is free, and full recordings will be made available to all who register after the event.